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Kids Hope Alliance meal program expanding to help kids struggling with hunger

16 million kids struggle with hunger each year in the U.S. The Kids Hope Alliance is working to change that in Jacksonville.
16 million kids struggle with hunger each year in the U.S. The Kids Hope Alliance is working to change that in Jacksonville.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – At least 16 million kids struggle with hunger each year in the U.S. -- that’s one in five children. Locally, the Kids Hope Alliance is working to change that in Jacksonville.

The group’s meal program is expanding.

For nearly 20 years, Kids Hope Alliance has helped provide nearly 2,000 children access to free nutritious meals.

The group serves 28 different locations -- and the newest is at River City Science Academy Boys & Girls Club.

The new site will give 100 children access to Free, Nutritious food after school.

“It helps to bridge the gap of food insecurity in our city. So, the programs we’re funding are occurring in areas where there’s 50% or more free or reduced lunch for kids. So especially during the school year kids can go to school and they can get breakfast at school, and they can get lunch at school. But this provides the opportunity for them also to have a nutritious well balanced super before they go home because some of those children may not get food again until they return to school the next day,” said Mary Nash, Kids Hope Alliance Director of Grants Management.

Just over 10% of all U.S. households experienced food insecurity at some point during 2019 according to the US Department of Agriculture.

The coronavirus pandemic has only worsened the problem.

More than 13.5% of households experienced food insecurity last year.

Data shows Black families are twice as likely as white families to struggle with this issue.

Location is another factor because 19 million Americans live in food deserts or areas with limited access to nutritious food.

Over the summer, Kids Hope Alliance served 200,000 meals to sites across Jacksonville.

The 28 sites where afterschool meals are offered by the organization are listed below:

  • 33rd Street Police Athletic League 2165 West 33rd. St. 32209
  • America’s Little Leaders 1527 Gandy St. 32208
  • Beaches Boys and Girls Club 820 Seagate Ave. 32250
  • Cornerstone Day School 9039 Beach Blvd. 32216
  • Don’t Miss a Beat at Edith Brown Ford 2839 W. Beaver St. 32254
  • Eastside Police Athletic League 1050 Franklin St. 32206
  • Foundation Academy Afterschool Program 3675 San Pablo Road S. 32224
  • Henry T. Jones Community Center 3856 Grant Rd. 32207
  • Global Outreach Charter Academy 8985 Lone Star Rd. 32211
  • Johnnie Walker Community Center 2500 W. 20th St. 32209
  • Joshua Christian Academy 924 St. Clair St., 32254
  • Julian Barrs Community Center 10151 Crystal Springs Rd. 32221
  • MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation 1096 West 6th St. 32209
  • Mallison Park Police Athletic League 441 Day Ave. 32254
  • Mary Lena Gibbs Community Center 6974 Wilson Blvd., 32210
  • Mitchell Community Center 1010 Acorn St. 32209
  • Monument Police Athletic League 3450 Monument Rd. 32225
  • NFL YET Boys & Girls Club 555 W. 25th St. 32206
  • River City Science Academy Boys & Girls Club 7450 Beach Blvd. 32216
  • Sanctuary on 8th Street 120 Eight Street E 32206
  • THD 24 Hr. Christian Learning Center 5013 Broadway Ave. 32254
  • The Boys & Girls Club at Southwind Villas 8711 Newton Rd. Bldg. 14 32216
  • The Bridge Boys & Girls Club 1824 Pearl St. 32206
  • The Carpenter’s Shop 1601 University Blvd. 32211
  • Victory Pointe Boys & Girls Clubs 6750 Ramona Blvd.32205
  • Vision of Excellence at McGirts Creek 8435 118th St. 32244
  • Wayman Academy of the Arts 1176 Labelle St. 32205

For more resources, you can click here: https://www.kidshopealliance.org/

About the Author:

Anchors the 4:30 a.m. newscast, provides traffic updates throughout the rest of The Morning Show, then reports on events in the community.