TLC’s summer food program for kids kicks off Monday
Volunteers will begin rolling through the county on Monday delivering meals to children as part of a local
service organization’s Summer Food Program.
The program of the TLC Community Center, delivers a hot supper meal to kids throughout the community as well as a bagged breakfast and bagged lunch for the children to have for the next day.
This is the 11th year for the program, which has seen a tremendous growth in the number of children served.
“In 2010 our program served 7,654 meals to children in Carter County,” said TLC Community Center Director Angie Odom. “Just three years later, in 2013, we served 48,960 meals, feeding an average of 320 children each day.”
The Summer Food Program will run from June 2 through Aug. 8 this year, and works to provide meals to children during the summer when the school system meal program is not available to them.
Volunteers deliver the meals to several locations throughout the county each week, Monday through Friday. Children must be present at the delivery site in order to receive a meal, Odom said. No meals are delivered on July 4.
New for the program this year, a site has been added in Roan Mountain.
Odom said that as of right now, lunch meals are being delivered at the Roan Mountain location on Fridays only until the need of the community and interest in the program can be determined.
Also new this year, Odom said her organization has partnered with Second Harvest Food Bank, which will provide “backpacks” that will be delivered to the children along with their Friday meals. Each “backpack” contains food for the children to eat over the weekend when the Summer Food Program does not deliver meals.
Odom said that without the volunteers and the generosity of the community the Summer Food Program would not be a success. The TLC Community Center receives no state or federal funding, Odom said, and all of its programs are supported entirely through donations from the community.
“I want to thank all of the sponsors of the program this year. They are so important to the success of the Summer Food Program,” Odom said. “I feel their support of this program shows their dedication to this community.”
Sponsors have either donated food items or made financial donations which allowed the Center to purchase food for the program. The sponsors for this year’s Summer Food Program are: First United Methodist Church, Hunter First Baptist Church, Central Community Christian Church, Carter Christian Church, Grace Baptist Church, Lower Shell Creek Baptist Church, Lynn Valley Baptist Church, Valley Forge Free Will Baptist Church, Immanuel Baptist Church, Silver Angels In Home Care, Unaka Avenue Baptist Church, Sunnyside Baptist Church, Zion Baptist, City Market, Big John’s Closeouts, Leon Humphrey, Kent Williams, Keith Bowers, Misty Buck and Chris Mathes.
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