The time between Friday afternoon and Monday morning has been called “The Hunger Gap”. It is the time when homeless children and those living in poverty lack reliable access to food. Many children in Baltimore City and Baltimore County rely on free breakfast and lunch provided at school. When school is closed on weekends and holidays, some of these children go hungry. Nearly 80% of Baltimore City students (64,000 children) and 44% of Baltimore County students (50,000 children) are considered food insecure and participate in the free and reduced-price meals program (FARMS), which equates to more than 114,000 students in our region who may struggle with hunger when school is not in session. Good nutrition is critical to good health and success at school. Children who come to school hungry often exhibit trouble concentrating, lower math and reading scores, difficulty interacting with peers, and lower graduation rates. By providing weekend food, we can improve their health and increase their chances at success in school by removing one obstacle that prevents them from reaching their full potential.
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