Children’s Hunger Alliance Presents $25,000 to Newark City Schools as Part of School Breakfast Advocacy
Children’s Hunger Alliance Has Awarded $200,000 in 2016 to Ohio Schools to Support School Breakfast Expansion as part of $1.5 million Walmart Grant
COLUMBUS, OHIO (August 18, 2016) – Children’s Hunger Alliance last week presented Newark City Schools with $25,000 to help support the school district’s plans to expand the school breakfast program for its 6,000 students. Children’s Hunger Alliance has recognized school breakfast participation as an opportunity to provide at-risk children with a sustainable way to begin their school day nourished and energized by a healthy breakfast.
“We appreciate having Children’s Hunger Alliance available to consult with us on the most efficient way to deliver breakfast to our student body,” said Doug Ute, Superintendent of Newark City Schools. “We know that learning requires a healthy and attentive student, and that becomes difficult if a child is sitting in the classroom with an empty stomach. The $25,000 will help us with new ways to offer breakfast, such as allowing elementary students to eat breakfast in the classroom”
Eating breakfast helps improve a student’s ability to concentrate in the classroom and has also been shown to improve test scores while decreasing anxiety and tardiness. Yet only 36.3% of Ohio teens report eating breakfast every day, according to the Ohio Department of Health.
Traditionally one of the challenges in having students participate in school breakfasts has come around the logistical challenge of having students go to the cafeteria for breakfast. New strategies have boosted participation, such as delivering breakfast to the classroom so that it is part of the school day or offering grab ‘n go breakfast stations that will allow students to access meals from high-traffic areas. Some schools that have students start their day in classrooms as early as 7 a.m. may provide students with a second chance breakfast during a break in the morning, whereas students may have traditionally eaten unhealthy snacks to hold them over to lunch.
“Nearly 9,000 children in Licking County live in food insecure homes, and we are working to make sure that no child has to worry about where their next meal is coming from,” explained Mary Lynn Foster, president and CEO of Children’s Hunger Alliance. “Schools at times need financial support to supplement their resources so they can offer every child the chance to enjoy a healthy breakfast. We are pleased to be able to partner with Newark City schools to help them find the best ways to serve their student population.”
Children’s Hunger Alliance is dedicated to increasing participation in the federal School Breakfast Program and is working with schools throughout Ohio to analyze student enrollment, the percentage of income-eligible and qualifying children, existing participation rates, methods of breakfast delivery and financial viability. Across Ohio during the 2014-2015 school year, only 54% of free and reduced-price eligible students who access school lunch also accessed school breakfast according to the School Breakfast Scorecard produced by the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC). The goal set by FRAC as a benchmark for successful student participation is 70% of free and reduced-price eligible students accessing school breakfasts, so there remains work to be done in Ohio.
In 2016 Children’s Hunger Alliance has awarded $200,000 in financial grants to school districts throughout Ohio to help schools begin implementing the federal School Breakfast Program or to expand their services. The funding was made available by a $1.5 million grant that the Walmart National Foundation provided Children’s Hunger Alliance to better serve the needs of food insecure children throughout the state.
About Children’s Hunger Alliance
Children’s Hunger Alliance is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to purposefully ensuring that children without access receive healthy food, nutrition education and physical activity. Children’s Hunger Alliance does this by working with child care providers, and breakfast, afterschool and summer meal programs. Learn more at childrenshungeralliance.org.