Backpack Buddies

In North Carolina, 1 in 4 kids under the age of 18 does not have enough to eat. We rank ninth in the country for child food insecurity. BackPack Buddies, a program of the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, feeds children from food-insecure homes in the seven-county area surrounding the Triangle. School-aged children selected by their principal, guidance counselor or after-school program receive a package containing six balanced meals and two healthy snacks at the end of every week during the traditional school year. This package gets them through the weekend.

Childhood food insecurity can lead to developmental, health and behavioral problems, and can make it more difficult to concentrate and succeed in school. These children are better prepared to learn and grow thanks to the healthy weekend meals and snacks provided by JLR and our generous donors.

JLR Impact

We believe that hunger is unacceptable and that children deserve to have healthy meals and the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty. Each week during the school year, JLR’s BackPack Buddies feeds more than 150 children at Lacy, Root and Hunter Elementary School combined. Since JLR first partnered with BackPack Buddies in 2010, the program has steadily grown. In 2014, JLR’s BackPack Buddies team became the first group working with the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle to deliver fresh fruit to children with their weekend bags. Each week, the team delivers at least two pieces of fresh fruit to each child.

How to Contribute

It would be impossible for BackPack Buddies to have such an impact without help from individuals and groups. Below are a few ways that you can get involved:

  • Host a food drive at your workplace, neighborhood, place of worship, etc. See a list of items needed.
  • Go in with your book club, supper club, etc. to sponsor one child for the entire school year ($350)
  • Sponsor fresh fruit for a week ($80)
  • Request donations be made to BackPack Buddies in lieu of gifts at birthday parties and other events
  • Recommend a business that would host a percentage of sales to BackPack Buddies
  • Donate a gift card for a local grocery store
  • Hosting an event for work or at home? Add a charitable element to it and ask attendees to bring food donations.  
  • Don’t know what to get the person who has everything? Make a donation to BackPack Buddies in their honor and we will send them an honor card informing of the donation made on their behalf.

 

Contact Us

Please contact backpack@jlraleigh.org for more information about this program or to donate food or funds.