Children experiencing food insecurity are particularly vulnerable during non-school hours when they may not have access to the food they need to lead a healthy life. This never became more apparent than during the pandemic. CHA knew developing a program to support high-need schools and provide food to all students was necessary, but needed additional private funding to accomplish this.
Beginning in the fall of 2021, CHA piloted the Adopt-A-School program with Moler Elementary, a school within the Columbus City Schools district, and it has been a great success. The program began in mid-November and ran through the remainder of the school year. During that time approximately 25,500 weekend meals were given to over 300 students, all thanks to the generous support of The Champion Companies.
CHA is happy to announce that in less than a year the program has expanded to six schools throughout the state of Ohio. New program partners for the 2022-2023 school year currently include:
- Mercy Health – adopted Leipsic Elementary in Leipsic, Putnam Country
- Raymond Charitable Foundation – adopted Clark Elementary and Memorial Elementary in Cleveland, Cuyahoga County
- Sutton Bank – adopted John Sherman Elementary School in Mansfield, Richland County
- UnitedHealth Care – adopted West Mound Elementary School in Columbus, Franklin County
Another meal program experiencing expansion is our work with children’s hospital locations. A pediatric resident at Nationwide Children’s Hospital saw children coming in for treatment and realized they were experiencing food insecurity, which contributed to some of their health issues. The resident reached out to CHA to see about partnering to provide meals for these children. What started at one Nationwide Children’s Hospital primary care clinic in downtown Columbus, has now expended to seven locations in Columbus and Dayton. In less than a year over 29,000 meals have been distributed to children in need. Thank you to our funding partners The Harry C. Moores Foundation, Nordson Corporation Foundation, PNC Charitable Trust, and Worthington Industries for contributing to the expansion.
CHA thanks all of our partners for seeing a need and being willing to step up to help children struggling with hunger throughout Ohio.