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Seven Loaves Summer Lunch Program

 

School-aged children who normally depend on free and reduced lunches during the school year, participate in the free summer lunch program at three locations in North Dallas and Plano

 

This summer, approximately 12,000 nutritious lunches (Monday through Friday) will be provided from the Summer Lunch Program, which is organized by The Seven Loaves Community at three locations including McCallum Crossing Apartments and Katie Jackson Park in North Dallas as well as Forman Elementary School in Plano, where a late breakfast and mid-morning snack are also available to kids.  Sites were determined based on percentage of residents who participate in the free or reduced lunch program during the year.

“Summer is the hungriest season of the year for food insecure children,” said Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere. “The Seven Loaves Lunch Program is a vital resource for Plano’s most vulnerable.”

Area volunteers distribute the healthy lunches to anyone, ages 1-18, who came to a feeding site.  The only requirements were that the children were required to eat on site.  They did not have to be a resident of Collin County. 

“For many children, the meals they get at school are the only meals they receive each day, so we are thrilled we could continue bringing them lunch during the summer,” said Rev. Jennifer Arnold, executive director, Seven Loaves Community. “We are very thankful for the many volunteers and donors who make this possible and hope to inspire others to come on board so we can have all days covered.  This program makes a huge impact on the lives of hungry children during the summer!”

Seven Loaves Community began the Summer Lunch Program in 2009 in partnership with the North Texas Food Bank.  Additional collaborators have grown to include Plano ISD, CitySquare , Custer Road United Methodist Church, Young Men’s Service League, and National Charity League. 

“My sons and I have had the opportunity to work alongside many dedicated volunteers at the various Summer Lunch sites over the years, and we have watched the program grow and evolve,” said Vicki Madden, a longtime volunteer. “We have met so many amazing children and their parents at these lunch sites, and our lives have been enriched by our interactions with them.  Through the years, we have become increasingly aware of the important role that the Summer Lunch program plays in building community among the children who dine with us, the parents who look after them, and the volunteers of all ages who play board games, color pictures, play catch, blow bubbles, exchange stories, and share time with the children as they enjoy their lunches. Andrew, a five year old who was at one of the sites last week, approached me after he finished his meal and said, ‘Thank you so much for inviting us to lunch.’ I hope that every child who participates in the program feels as though they are a special, invited guest... just like Andrew.

 “We are beyond grateful to the community’s help in fighting this never ending battle of hunger,” said Terry Breedlove, COO/General Manager, Seven Loaves Community and Food Pantry.  “If you would like to help, please contact us at 214-291-8085 or email info@7LoavesCommunity.org for more information.”

 

 

 

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