Senator Sherrod Brown(D-OH) held one of his routine conference calls addressing a topic that is especially relevant at the present time across Ohio. With young children in school the majority of the year, parents are somewhat relieved of the responsibility of providing nutritional and healthy meals throughout each day.
In the summer though, while school is out, parents sometimes struggle finding a routine during those three months of the year. Whether it be creating a structure routine or actually providing the food due to hardship, many kids can lack many of the things needed to sustain a healthy body.
In Ohio, over 800,000 children are provided with nutrition assistance throughout the course of the school year. Through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, summer food programs are being set up to help combat this problem.
The Summer Food service Program, or SFSP, has been established with dozens of sites throughout the Buckeye state. Currently there are in excess of 1,200 sites in nearly 80 counties. Brown plans to release a county by county report on the number of Ohio students which qualify for free or reduced lunches to distribute a list of summer feeding sites to them. While these sites have been up and running, Brown's team believes that they should be utilized much more as it is a great program for everyone involved- including the parents.
Most of these sites are run in locally approved locations including school districts, local government, camps, and private non profit organizations. As Chairman of the Senate Subcomittee on Hunger, Nutrition, and Family Farms, Brown reformed many of the anti-hunger components of several Acts enacted by the Ohio policy makers.
Joining Senator Brown for the conference call was the Executive Director of the Ohio Association of Second Harvest Foodbanks, Lisa Hamler-Fugitt and Washington United Church of Christ of Cincinatti's Reverend Pam Defusco.
"These really are great programs that are out here but it's important that everyone know about them which is what we want to do today." Brown explained.
Muklewicz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org