If we could sum it up into a few words, it’d be…
…because kids who don’t get enough to eat begin life at a serious disadvantage. When they’re hungry, children are more likely to face higher risks of health conditions. Not only that…but, as they get older, kids struggling to get enough to eat are more likely to repeat a grade in school; experience developmental impairments; and may be at an increased risk of social and behavioral problems.
We’re sure that you’re with us when we say that no child should have to go hungry. Ever. Solid nutrition is important for children to establish a strong foundation with positive implications for their physical and mental health.
Basically, if a child is hungry, they can’t perform their best. They shouldn’t be worrying about how hungry they feel instead of focusing on their schoolwork or playing with their friends.
SO, WHY ARE WE FOCUSED ON THIS?
Well, most households have consistent, dependable access to food to sustain an active, healthy living. These households are defined as “food secure“. But, some households have limited access to food due to lack of money and a number of other resources. These households are defined as “food insecure“. Chances are, someone your child goes to school with may not have enough to eat at home. The problem is vast but, often hidden.
CHILD HUNGER IN CARTERET COUNTY
According to Feeding America, in 2017, 19.6% of children in Carteret County lived in households that were “food insecure“. That’s about 1-in-5 of our local children.
During the 2018-2019 school year, 42% (nearly half) of the 3,378 children enrolled in Carteret County public schools depended on free or reduced-cost school meals. That means they can get breakfast, lunch and sometimes snacks while at school.
SO, WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY AREN’T AT SCHOOL?
Consider for a minute what happens when a kid isn’t in school to benefit from those free or reduced-cost meals…like over the typical weekend; extended weekends; holidays; winter and summer breaks.
THEN, WHAT ARE WE DOING ABOUT IT?
Many organizations focus on summer break. Some focus on weekend solutions. We’re focusing on winter break. Which is why we’re holding this event in November. Think about it…many kids are out for nearly three weeks around the holidays. That’s three weeks of food costs on parents who may already be struggling to make ends meet in addition to trying to pay for holiday gifts. We think this period of time is often overlooked and needs to be addressed.
This isn’t just an event to raise money to buy a bunch of food to send to a local food pantry before the holidays to make everyone feel good about themselves. While that is important, we want to do more than that. So, we’ve established Lunchbox Promises Foundation – a 501(c)(3) nonprofit operating under federal tax identification (EIN) 83-3375650. Because we want to be directly engaged with the community by working with teachers at our local schools to identify ways we can make sure kids truly in-need receive the food they need to sustain them through the holiday break. It doesn’t do a child any good if the food is sitting on a shelf at a food pantry and the kid that needs it is sitting at home with no way to access it.
100% of the funds raised stay local and will be used for childhood hunger relief initiatives in Carteret County.
Okay…enough of the serious talk. We could go on for days. How about you just register already and come join us on race day – Saturday, January 18th, 2020! Even if you’re not a runner, you can still participate as a volunteer, by donating to our cause, or even just spreading the word about us and this event. Any little bit helps and we’re very gracious for it.
See you at the start line!