Rotary Reaches a Helping Hand to CCUSD Backpack Program

food-backpack2At its April 8 meeting at the Culver Hotel, the Rotary Club of Culver City will donate $2,500 to the CCUSD Backpacks for Kids program and hear from organizers about the programs success and future plans.

Since 2013, the CCUSD Backpacks for Kids program has been serving students at all CCUSD school sites, serving more than 10,000 meals to students throughout the year.

“Once the word got out about CCUSD students needing food for the weekend, the community responded enthusiastically,” said parent Jamie Wallace, who helps run the program. “Some people are surprised that food uncertainty is a problem in Culver City. I know from first-hand experience from my involvement in our community that there is incredible diversity woven into the fabric of our city and our students. All students should have food on the weekends. After all, hunger should not stand in the way of growing minds.”

“This has been an incredibly successful program that has targeted an important basic need for our students and their families,” said CCUSD Superintendent Dave LaRose. “As we all know, healthy meals are vital for student growth, development and learning. The absence of nutrition on the weekend creates challenges for our children, families and those who serve them in our schools.”

The CCUSD Backpacks for Kids Program provides food to CCUSD students who may not have access to healthy food during the weekend. Parents and staff work together to identify students in need. On Thursdays, parents and student volunteers at one CCUSD location fill the backpacks. The backpacks are delivered every Friday to each school for these students to take home anonymously.

“Our Middle School students take pride in filling the backpacks weekly,” said Leslie Gardner, who helped spearhead the effort. “This work is changing their lives as well as the lives of the students that the backpacks are made for.”

Parents, students and community volunteers run the program. Our school families and community members provide pre-packaged, nonperishable foods through school food drives and other donations. Tax deductible donations are also being accepted to fill the gap between the need and the food donations.

For more information or to donate, please go to  [email protected] gmail.com.

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