Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Head Start sponsorship aids children with food insecurities

by KATHY HUBBARD Contributing Writer
| February 4, 2023 1:00 AM

Food insecurities harm children of all ages at all stages of development. With that thought in mind, local resident and philanthropist Kelly Czap donated $4,850 to Food for Our Children’s program at Head Start.

Czap’s donation will provide daily snacks and weekend provisions for children at risk for developmental delays due to hunger. Studies show that preschool kids who are hungry are often unable to acquire social and academic skills necessary to transition to kindergarten.

While children in Head Start programs are learning practices that contribute to growth in learning, social and emotional development, language and literacy, cognition and physical development, thanks to Czap’s generous donation, local children will get a fighting chance at success.

“This ‘fighting chance’ is offered throughout Bonner County’s school system,” Board member Kris Contor said. “Food for Our Children is a not-for-profit public charity that purchases food at wholesale prices, which is then brought to the Bonner Community Food Bank, where volunteers add fresh fruit, sort the bags and organize them for delivery to the individual schools. Friday afternoons, over 400 local children leave school with a weekend bag full of food, ensuring they arrive on Monday morning ready to learn.”

Contor said that FFOC is proud that 100 percent of donations go directly to purchase food. “We have no paid staff. Volunteers organize and distribute the food and FFOC board members cover any costs related to operating the charity. All donations stay in Bonner County and no tax dollars go to the program.”

He also said that, since its inception in 2015, FFOC has distributed over 100,000 weekend bags to school-age children, and that, with inflation and rising housing costs, food insufficiency is a serious concern.

If you or your organization are interested in supporting FFOC’s mission to reduce childhood hunger in Bonner County, you can find out more at: www.foodforourchildren.org

“Also watch for and consider participating in many of the events and drives that our local organizations and businesses put on to support FFOC,” Contor said.

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