Statewide Blitz Day Promotes Free Summer Meals for Kids
Governor Dannel P. Malloy, Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman, Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor, and Congressman Jim Himes support statewide effort to increase summer meal participation
Hartford, Conn. (July 9, 2013) – The Connecticut No Kid Hungry campaign, a partnership of End Hunger Connecticut! and Share Our Strength®, yesterday distributed outreach materials in five communities across Connecticut to help increase awareness of the federally funded summer meal programs. The summer meal programs provide nutritious, free meals and snacks to kids and teens, 18 years of age and younger, all summer long. Governor Malloy, Lieutenant Governor Wyman, Commissioner Pryor, Congressman Himes, and Lucy Nolan partnered with the Connecticut No Kid Hungry campaign to launch Connecticut’s 2013 summer meal programs and outreach efforts at events in Hartford and Norwalk.
“Access to nutritious food is important for a bright future for all of our young people,” said Governor Malloy. “I want to thank the No Kid Hungry campaign and all of their partners for their work to launch the summer meal programs here in our state. Today is much more than just a kick-off for Summer Meals, it also builds on our commitment to Connecticut children—healthy, nutritious meals during the summer so they come back to school ready to learn.”
There are more than 400 locations across Connecticut that make free meals and snacks available to all kids and teens during the summer months. Many summer meals locations also offer recreational activities and entertainment to ensure participants enjoy some summer fun while eating a nutritious meal.
“Although Connecticut is considered among the wealthiest states in the nation, food hardship is a challenge facing many families, especially during the summer months,” Lucy Nolan, Executive Director, End Hunger Connecticut!, said. “Last summer only 25 percent of the Connecticut children who receive free or reduced-price lunch during the school year participated in the summer meal programs. This summer, we’re determined to connect far more families to summer meals by raising awareness throughout communities across Connecticut.”
“Improving access to healthy meals is a critical part of building a strong future for all of Connecticut’s kids,” said Lt. Governor Wyman. “By providing children with the nutrition they need over the summer and ensuring students come back to school ready to learn, the No Kid Hungry campaign is building on our work to improve our public education system—and prepare our young people to thrive.”
“Nutrition is a year-round need for Connecticut students and is essential for setting students up for success,” said State Department of Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor. “Through the work of the State Department of Education and the work of community partners, such as the No Kid Hungry Campaign, Connecticut’s Summer Meals reach a greater percentage of students than 45 other states. But the reality is that there remains a substantial unmet need and we must do better. Raising awareness of the summer meal programs is a great step in the right direction and a key to increasing participation.”
To find a free summer meals site in your community, visit www.ctsummerfood.org, call toll free 2-1-1 or text ‘CTMeals’ to 877-877.
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About the Connecticut No Kid Hungry Campaign
The CT No Kid Hungry campaign is a partnership of End Hunger Connecticut!, a statewide anti-hunger and food security organization, with headquarters in Hartford and Share Our Strength®, a national nonprofit working to end childhood hunger. Support for this initiative is also provided through Our Family Foundation.
About End Hunger Connecticut!
End Hunger Connecticut! is a statewide anti-hunger and food security organization. By focusing on advocacy, outreach, education and research, EHC! serves as a comprehensive anti-hunger resource for community organizations, legislators, and low-income families. To learn more, visit: www.endhungerct.org.
Media Contact: Danielle Cyr | Co-Communications | 860.676.4400 | Danielle@cocommunications.com