One in four children is at risk for hunger in New Orleans; 32% of those children are likely ineligible for federal nutrition programs due to income level according to figures cited by Feeding America.
NEW ORLEANS, June 6, 2016 — Sodexo’s Feeding Our Future® summer meal program launches in New Orleans today, helping to further close the nutrition gap that widens when the school year ends. The program, led by Sodexo’s Dining Services team at Tulane University, is a collaborative effort with the City of New Orleans Recreation Development Commission and the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation. Feeding Our Future in New Orleans starts today, June 6 and runs through August 5.
More than 23 percent of children in the greater New Orleans area are at risk of hunger; that is an astounding 140,000 kids(*) living in low income households who may not be certain about where they will get their next meal once school lets out for the summer. Supplemental nutrition programs like Feeding Our Future and other federally-funded programs like the USDA Summer Meal Program help fill the gap. In addition to partnering in New Orleans to operate some of the federal programs, Sodexo’s Feeding Our Future will provide 12,000 meals to support children under age 18 in the City of New Orleans this summer at five City Community Centers – Behrman Park, Gernon Brown Recreation Center, Joe W. Brown Park, Sanchez Multi-Purpose Center, and St. Bernard Recreation Center.
“Sodexo has a long history of commitment to the City of New Orleans and once again they have illustrated that through public-private partnerships, we can work together to solve major issues," says City of New Orleans Mayor Mitchell J. Landrieu. “We appreciate that Sodexo not only funds these programs, but also engages their local workforce of over 800-strong—empowering them to make a difference in our city.”
The New Orleans program is in its first year in 2016, but Sodexo currently operates Feeding Our Future in 23 additional U.S. cities, nine in Canada, and has provided more than 5.6 million meals to children at risk of hunger since it began in 1997. This summer, the program is estimated to serve nearly 500,000 healthy meals to those in need.
“Feeding America reports that 84 percent of their client households with children report purchasing the cheapest food available, even if they know it is not the healthiest option, in an effort to provide enough food for their family”, says Patrick Connolly, Global CEO, Universities for Sodexo. “Our teams are committed to improving the communities where they live, work, and serve and Feeding Our Future gives them a unique opportunity to give back by helping to fill that summer meal gap with a healthy and nutritious meal.”
FINDING LOCAL SUMMER MEAL PROGRAMS
Families and organizations can locate “open programs” offering free summer meals in their community by contacting Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation partners at No Kid Hungry, visiting the USDA Summer Food Rocks website or calling the National Hunger Hotline at 866-3-Hungry or 877-8-Hambre for information in Spanish. You can also text the word “Food” to 877-877 to find a site nearby.
Sodexo delivers more than 100 services across North America that enhance organizational performance, contribute to local communities and improve quality of life. The Fortune Global 500 company is a leader in delivering sustainable, integrated facilities management and foodservice operations.
Learn more about the company at its corporate blog, Sodexo Insights.
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