BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — To help children get the nutritious lunches they need over the summer, Corner-stone Church has stepped up to host Connecting Kids to Meals.
The Ohio Department of Education provides funding for the summer food program, which provides a free mid-day meal consisting of a fruit, vegetable and protein. Harida Hampton is director of family ministries at Cornerstone Church, which oversees the lunch program.
“We know that in the summer, when school is out, there are children who are not getting their meals and we want to reach out to those in the community who might need a meal or some other activity outside of the house,” she said.
In addition to Connect-ing Kids to Meals, the church has also added Power Up Kids programming to the meal. With it, those who come to the church to eat can also take part in activities centered on positive behavior such as peace, goodness and kindness, Hampton said.
“We want to encourage characteristics that they can build into their lives to help impact and change the world around them,” she said.
An average of 25 to 35 individuals have been taking part in the free lunch daily, but several are also junior leaders with the program.
The meals are free to those who want to participate and there is no income eligibility requirement to qualify for the lunches. Some of the Power Up programing also involves giveaways, which the church supports.
The summer food service program is for all children ages 18 and younger. Individuals with disabilities and approved individualized education programs are eligible through age 21.
Cornerstone Church is located at 1520 Reynolds Rd. in Maumee. The program is offered Monday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and takes place through Thursday, August 8.
In addition to Cornerstone Church, Connecting Kids to Meals lunches will also be served at the Heatherdowns Branch Library located at 3265 Glanzman Rd. in Toledo. Those lunches are being served now through Thursday, August 15 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
For more information, please call (866) 348-6479.