Connecticut Food Bank’s Programs Director Luray Shepard is serving as a panelist at this week’s Northeast Food Bank Closing the Meal Gap conference in Boston, Massachusetts, hosted by The Greater Boston Food Bank and the USDA Food and Nutrition Service, Northeast Region. Shepard is presenting information about Connecticut Food Bank’s Kids BackPack Program which benefits nearly 1,750 students in 16 Connecticut school districts. The program supplies students in nearly 70 schools with nutritious food during weekends when other resources, including free/reduced price school meals, are not available to them.
By partnering with local public school systems, teachers and staff, Connecticut Food Bank provides these students with kid-friendly food distributed discreetly at school at the end of each week, using their own backpack or one given to them. The children receive two servings each of 100 percent fruit juice, shelf-stable milk, two whole grain cereals, two high-nutrition entrees and two low-fat, low sugar snacks.
Other conference speakers include Kevin Concannon, the Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services at the United States Department of Agriculture; as well as representatives from Feeding America, The Greater Boston Food Bank, Food Bank for New York City and Foodshare.