Hartford, Connecticut (PRWEB) January 06, 2015
During 2014, End Hunger Connecticut!, a statewide anti-hunger and food security organization, made significant progress in connecting thousands of children to federal child nutrition programs helping to decrease hunger in communities across the state.
Thanks to the generous support from Our Family Foundation by Stop & Shop and its ‘Fighting Child Hunger Initiative,’ End Hunger Connecticut! has been able to not only connect children to programs, but also improve access to healthy foods and extend its reach to serve more communities.
Connecting More Families to Summer Meals Programs
The Summer Meals Programs provides nutritious, free meals and snacks to children and teens, 18 years of age and younger, all summer long. Five new site sponsors and 26 new feeding sites joined Connecticut’s Summer Meals Programs in 2014.
In 2014, End Hunger Connecticut! and its partners were able to ensure all 34 area eligible Connecticut towns had an open Summer Meals site where any child 18 and under can go for a free, nutritious meal. Additionally, over the course of the summer 24 partner organizations were engaged, 33 elected/appointed officials were involved in events, more than 300 volunteers were recruited and nearly 200,000 outreach materials were distributed as part of Summer Meals outreach.
Through these comprehensive outreach efforts, End Hunger Connecticut! has significantly increased visits to CTSummerMeals.org, a free resource provided by EHC! that connects families to local meal sites in their community.
Providing Children with After-School Nourishment Through ‘Suppers’
With the help of the Our Family Foundation, in 2014, End Hunger Connecticut! was able to ensure children were connected to meals after school through the federal At-Risk After School Meal Program, or ‘Supper’, Program. Thanks to End Hunger Connecticut!’s leadership and the participation of community partners, the Supper Program has grown to include 31 meal sites. During the 2013-2014school year, a total of 116,999 meals and 10,630 children were served, representing a 46% increase in the number of children served daily.
Mini-Grants to Fund Nutrition Education in Connecticut
The Mission Nutrition Mini Grants Program has allowed End Hunger Connecticut! to provide community partners with funding for nutrition, gardening and agricultural education activities, including fresh fruit and vegetable tastings, at Summer Meals sites across the state.
In 2014, a total of 55 tasting sessions were held at 20 Summer Meals sites which reached over 800 children and teens.
“Our Family Foundation by Stop & Shop has been a generous and invaluable partner in the fight to end childhood hunger in Connecticut,” Lucy Nolan, Executive Director, End Hunger Connecticut!, said. “Their support has been vital to helping address hunger when children are out of school with no access to school meals and increasing the number of communities that have access to these critical nutrition assistance programs.”
To learn more about the work of End Hunger Connecticut!, visit http://www.endhungerct.org.
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: http://www.endhungerct.org.
About Stop & Shop
The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company LLC employs over 59,000 associates and operates 395 stores throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and New Jersey. The company helps support local communities fight hunger, combat childhood cancer and promote general health and wellness – with emphasis on children’s educational and support programs. In its commitment to be a sustainable company, Stop & Shop is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council and EPA’s Smart Way program and has been recognized by the EPA for the superior energy management of its stores. Stop & Shop is an Ahold company. To learn more about Stop & Shop, visit http://www.stopandshop.com or http://www.facebook.com/stopandshop.