YMCA Backpack Program
In the Fall of 2016, the Lock Haven Area YMCA started the Backpack Program. With our school district at a 40-60 percent poverty level, we were notified by nurses, guidance counselors and teachers that there was a need to feed the children on a weekend basis. Children would come to school on Mondays with headaches and stomach cramps. These symptoms came from the lack of nutrition on the weekends. In order for us to help the children and supply the children with nutritious kid-friendly food, we set to work.
We gathered a lot of volunteers to run the program. We needed to stock the food, pack the food, and deliver the food. It takes 100’s of volunteers a year to help the children in need. At this time we deliver 150 backpacks a week. We send backpacks to Robb Elementary, Woodward Elementary, and Sugar Valley Charter.
Inside the backpacks we pack kid friendly foods, like cereal, poptarts, oatmeal, mac and cheese, soups, fruits, veggies, drinks, and snacks. We want the children to eat. We are providing the children breakfast, lunch, and snacks.
With the support of local businesses, churches, and non-profit clubs and organizations, the YMCA has been able to support the backpack program. We still have many goals with the backpack program. At some point, we would like to extend the backpack program back to Renovo Elementary and into the Middle School.
The Backpack Program follows the YMCA’s mission to put Christian principles into action through programs that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.