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Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

JCPS hands out thousands of meals in second week of bulk distribution program | Education

By meerna Jun12,2024

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Most students in Jefferson County have summer vacation, but for many Louisville families, hunger doesn’t mean vacation.

The holidays are over, and that means the school of hard knocks is beginning for some families in need. That’s why JCPS has stepped up efforts to provide food at several distribution points so families can be sure their children will eat at least breakfast and lunch.

A stream of cars and smiling faces greeted families Tuesday as they pulled up to the Egg Lawn in Beckley Park for the second week of mass distribution.

Beckley Park is just one of three new mass meal distribution sites offered by JCPS this summer. Officials more than doubled the amount of food available this week after it quickly ran out last week.

Mica Alexis, a mother of two, was among many families who struggled to survive last week as food supplies failed to keep up with demand.

Last week, about 540 boxes were placed for students at three sites that were scheduled to distribute meals from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and they sold out in less than an hour.

“I arrived last week at 12,” Alexis said, “and they were nowhere to be found.”

That’s why Terina Edington with JCPS Nutrition Services said the district doubled the number of boxes this week to serve more families.

“We increased that amount this week,” she said. “We have just over 400 boxes available, so as you can see, things are moving much further than last time.”

Alexis is grateful for this and says that every little bit helps.

“I think it helps everyone right now,” she said. “The economy is in need, and not just the lower class. It’s the lower class and the middle class.”

As part of the program, each family receives two boxes of food, distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. The boxes contain enough food for breakfast and five lunches.

“This is perfect,” Gokce Beverly said. “Not only do they provide meals for my family, but they also eliminate the pressure of constantly thinking about, ‘OK, what am I going to cook for them today?’”

There are two other locations where weekly bulk meals can be delivered. One is located at the Evangel World Prayer Center and the other is at the Pleasure Ridge Park Training Center.

All three locations will continue to distribute meals every Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The congregate facilities are in addition to 50 summer dining locations in the district or on-site. All Jefferson County children under 18 are eligible for free meals, even if they are not JCPS students.

“I’m really glad they have this opportunity,” Alexis said. “I feel like this will be helpful to a lot of people.”

JCPS also feeds children who participate in more than 90 summer programs, such as the Backpack League. Families can find a list of all 2024 summer dining locations by visiting www.jcps.nutrislice.com or by calling the JCPS nutrition office at 502-485-3186.

Below is a list of bulk distribution locations where parents or guardians can pick up a box containing five free breakfasts and lunches for their children:

  • Beckley Park at the Egg Lawn (1411 Beckley Creek Parkway, Louisville, KY 40245), two parking lots away from the dog park and near the sprinkler park.
  • Evangel World Prayer Center (6900 Billtown Road, Louisville, KY 40299), near the Gene Snyder Freeway.
  • PRP Fire Training Center (8201 Greenwood Road, Louisville, KY 40258), near Cane Run Road.

The branches will be open on Tuesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. until July 26. Parents will be able to pick up one meal kit per child. If children are not present with a parent, there is a two-case limit and parents requesting meals for more than two children will be required to have all children present.

Bulk distribution sites will continue to operate until the last Tuesday in July, while other locations will remain open until July 26.

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By meerna

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