Yancey County families have experienced a 32% increase in children living in poverty (21.1% in 2000 to 27.9% in 2009, U.S. Census), high unemployment rates and a staggering increase in proportion of students eating free-or-reduced lunch (from 49% in 2007 to 60% in 2011). Many families often have to make difficult choices between paying rent, utilities, health care, or buying food. In response to this, a group of community volunteers and agencies are joining forces to coordinate a summer food program to bridge the gap for children who may be relying on the school lunch programs for their primary source of nutritional food.
The goal of the Summer Food Program is to serve at least 60 families, providing a home delivered food box every other week throughout the summer months. To maximize limited resources, various volunteers and agencies have accepted specific responsibilities. Reconciliation House will be purchasing the food through MANNA and coordinating the assembly of the boxes. Dig In! Community Garden and MiLo Acres Farms will be providing fresh produce for all of the boxes. Yancey Transportation Authority will be scheduling the deliveries. Graham Children’s Health Services will be responsible for the overall coordination of the program.
If you would like to support this project, you can make a tax-deductible contribution. Donations can be made to: Graham Children’s Health Services, 202 Medical Campus Drive, Burnsville, NC 28714.
To sign up to receive food boxes throughout the summer, call Yancey County Transportation Authority at 682-6144. This program is a collaborative effort between AMY Regional Library, Designing Women Group, Dig In! Community Garden, Graham Children’s Health Services, MANNA Food Bank, MiLo Acres Farm, Mitchell Yancey Partnership for Children, Reconciliation House, Yancey County Cooperative Extension Office, Yancey County DSS, Yancey County Schools & Yancey County Transportation Authority.