Vision 2020 Fighting Childhood Hunger
The Vision 2020 Backpack Nutrition Program, serves as a safety net for elementary students identified as economically disadvantaged by providing them with nutritious meals to use during weekends and school breaks when they don’t receive school breakfasts or lunches. The program operates during the school year, providing weekly weekend meals that travel home in student backpacks. Though funding limits the number of schools that can be served. An average of 100 students participated in the program each week during the past school year.
Elementary students who qualify for the free school lunch program are invited to sign up for the program. Families in participating schools will receive program and registration information early in the school year. Why is this program important to our communities?
During the most recent school year (2014-2015), 61% of Waushara County’s elementary school students were considered economically disadvantaged by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (compared to 45% of students statewide). In some local schools these rates are as high as 66 – 71% of students.
In 2013, the Food Research and Action Center reported that 13.1% of individuals living in the sixth congressional district (which includes Waushara County) were experiencing food hardship. Food hardship is the percentage of households that do not always having money to buy the food their family needs. This report is consistent with findings of a survey conducted by Waushara Food Connections in 2010. Waushara Food Connections found that 88% of low income households ran out of food; worried about having enough food or went hungry because they didn’t have money to purchase food.
The Vision 2020 Backpack Nutrition Program is funded by grants and donations received from individuals, businesses, civic groups and faith communities. It is an activity of Vision 2020, a committee of the Waushara Prevention Council, Inc. working with others to reduce the impact of poverty. The Waushara Prevention Council, Inc. is a non-profit network of community members and organizations who collaborate and advocate for effective prevention programs serving Waushara County. To learn more about the Vision 2020 Backpack Nutrition Program, make a donation or organize a donation drive contact Jan Novak at 920-787-6600, 888-250-4331 or firstname.lastname@example.org