Perhaps one of the positive things to come out of the recent teacher’s strike is a greater community awareness of the high levels of hunger in our community, particularly amongst children.
Contrary to the views of a recent letter writer (TNT, 9-23), a significant percentage of families are unable to provide enough food for their families. Many rely on free or reduced school meals for their children during the school year, but the need for food assistance continues over the weekend and when school is out of session.
At the St. Leo Food Connection, we try to meet this need by providing two days worth of food every Friday throughout the school year to more than 400 students at risk of going hungry over the weekend, and by operating numerous summer meal sites that serve lunch and snack to hundreds of children on weekdays throughout the summer.
As school resumes perhaps the Tacoma/Pierce County community can continue to explore ways to ensure that none of the children in our community go hungry whether or not school is in session.
(Glackin-Coley is director of the St. Leo Food Connection in Tacoma.)