More than 1 in 3 children in the City of San Diego live in families experiencing economic hardship. Under federally mandated programs, San Diego schools provide these children with free lunches during the week but there are no provisions for food on the weekends.
Hungry children cannot learn. Food deprivation has also been associated with several childhood chronic health problems, behavioral challenges, and social difficulties.
“Feeding San Diego’s Kids” is a weekend food assistance program developed by International Relief Teams. Since 2012, the program has served families with children attending the San Diego Unified School District who have been identified as low-income. All the families served are located in dense urban communities in central San Diego.
Our goal is to pick up where the school lunch program leaves off. Each week, volunteers fill food packs with nutritional food for a family of 4 for 2 days. At the end of the week, food packs are delivered by volunteers to local schools where a designated School Liaison distributes them to those children in the program. We currently have a team of 32 dedicated volunteers committed to this program.
Each food pack provides 24 meals (3 per day for 4 family members) each weekend. This year we are feeding 300 families for a total of 216,000 meals.
In celebration of the wonderful work that they do every single week, International Relief Teams hosted a Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon for the dedicated volunteers of our Feeding San Diego Kids program.
A success story for one Army veteran's young family due to our Feeding San Diego Kid’s program.
You first met Elena two years ago at Fay Elementary School with her three daughters: Maria, Michele, and Marcela. “My M&Ms,” she called them. They were struggling to get by, dependent on Elena’s husband’s income as a house painter to feed the girls. “Every day was a struggle,” said Elena.
Just two months ago, their mother left them without any notice. They came home from school one day and she was gone. They don’t know where she is or if she is ever coming back...
Maria is a mother of three kids, Ellery, 12, Christian, 10, and Sandi, 9. Christian and Sandi go to Carver Elementary, one of four schools participating in our Feeding San Diego’s Kids Program. Her husband Jesus, is a gardener and the sole financial provider for the family of five. Unfortunately, her husband’s income sometimes is not enough to pay for everything they need. After paying rent, electricity, gas, and medicine, “we sometimes have very little money left to buy food.”