Ten Fairfax County Public School (FCPS) buses began operating on Monday, June 28, with the aim of delivering their precious cargo: coolers full of nutritious breakfast and lunch items packaged in meal kits. in bulk for seven days, take out. It’s a lifeline for some children living within the 406 square miles of the county, who depend on USDA’s infant nutrition programs for the nourishment they need to grow and thrive.
According to the FCPS, nearly a third of its students were entitled to free and reduced-price meals in the fall of 2019. Families earning less than 130% of the poverty line are entitled to free meals, and those with incomes between 130 and 185 percent of the poverty line are entitled to reduced-price meals. The Fairfax County Summer Meal Program runs as part of the USDA Summer Food Service Program and enters its second week on July 5.
âThe distribution of meal kits provides an essential service to our community. Meals provide essential support to our most vulnerable students and families. When picking up, parents are not asked to provide any information other than the number of meals they need. said Dr. Ricardy Anderson, chairman of the Fairfax County School Board. âIt is important to continue to communicate that meal distribution is still available in schools and FCPS bus lines as families who need it most may not know that the service continues throughout the months. summer. “
The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that school districts could continue to serve free meals to all children, regardless of family income, and allow drive-thru or walk-in meals, offered in the form of take-out meals until June 2022. as part of its summer food service program.
The program is vital, especially for communities hardest hit by COVID. According to FCPS, all county children under the age of eighteen and all FCPS students, regardless of age, are eligible to receive free weekly meal kits, which can be provided to parents or caregivers without the presence of a child.
FCPS has made the free meal kits available in two ways. Parents, guardians and students can access weekly kits Meal service by bus distribution throughout the county until Thursday August 5th. The second option is to visit one of the Meal kit sites (every Monday) until August 2.
PARENTS AND CAREGIVERS can inform FCPS staff of the number of children who need a meal kit. No further questions are asked and no ID is required. The pupils can also collect the meal kits.
On Tuesday, June 29, Delmay Sandoval of Herndon was first in line at the Hutchinson Elementary School parking lot for this bus route meal service location. She was sitting in her car with the windows down with her two children and baby in the back seat. The temperature was 95 degrees and the sun was blazing. âI got this message last night from school. It’s in Spanish,â Sandoval said. “I didn’t know about meals before that.”
According to Sarah Aiello, director of Hutchinson, she sent several texts to the community the day before “to prepare them because it is something new”. She was standing in the school parking lot as the bus pulled up and shouting to people, âOnce a week, every Tuesday at 11:37 am.
Parents, guardians and students got out of their cars to receive the meal kits unloaded from the back of the bus. “I need it for three children,” said one woman. âDos ninos,â said one man.
Seeing young children in some vehicles, Aiello and other school staff rushed towards them with meal kits and loaded them into the chests. Aiello later reported that 80 meal kits were distributed.
Registered dietitians plan meals and trained food service professionals prepare meals daily using fresh, high-quality ingredients. Take-out meals “are tasty, well-balanced, and contain protein, whole grains, fruits and / or vegetables, and low-fat or fat-free milk,” according to the Fairfax County Office of Food and Nutrition Services.
Ten FCPS buses serve designated routes on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to schools and other locations, once a week with scheduled arrival and departure times for summer meal bus routes. The routes remain the same for the 6 week program. The last day of the summer meal bus routes is Thursday August 5th. Bus Meal Service – Summer 2021 | Fairfax County Public Schools for a list of routes from Monday to Thursday for the ten buses.
MONDAY MORNING FCPS Summer Meal Program Meal Kit sites are open from 8:30 am to 10:30 am, for the remaining weeks of the season – July 12 through August 2. Like bus routes, meal kits containing seven days of breakfast and lunch items are packaged in bulk. Adults can purchase kits for themselves and other adults for $ 28 each at the Monday sites. Meal kits are not available for purchase by adults on the buses.
The Monday Morning FCPS Summer Meal Program meal kit sites are Centerville HS, Edison HS, Falls Church HS, Hayfield SS, Marshall HS, Mount Vernon HS, South County HS, South Lakes HS, West Springfield HS, Westfield HS and Woodson HS.
Search Meal kit sites (every Monday) from June 28 to August 2 for more information.