All kids deserve the chance to dwell, study, develop, and thrive in houses, faculties, and neighborhoods which are supportive and secure.
Constant entry to nourishing meals is essential to their wholesome growth. But one in 5 kids in Pinellas County wouldn’t have sufficient nutritious meals for an energetic, wholesome life.
Extra households than ever—two in 5—dwell beneath the ALICE threshold, that means they’re employed however wrestle to make ends meet. And whereas housing, utility, and meals prices are rising. However paychecks aren’t.
Recognizing the extraordinary want, JWB’s Board invested in bulk meals purchases and a centralized hub with the St. Petersburg Free Clinic (SPFC). In flip, the Free Clinic orchestrates the distribution of meals to dozens of accomplice websites, feeding kids and households countywide.
“Whereas the pandemic noticed historic numbers of households looking for meals help, their want for nutritious meals is simply rising, stated Jennifer Yeagley, St. Petersburg Free Clinic CEO.
“Final 12 months, JWB led the cost in SPFC’s skill to distribute greater than 20.4 million kilos of meals all through Pinellas County, serving 1.2 million people in 2022 alone. They do that by means of distributing meals to accomplice meals pantries, church buildings, different nonprofit organizations, neighborhood household facilities, and even preschools.”
On common, the Free Clinic serves greater than 135,000 people a month throughout Pinellas County, a 51% improve 12 months over 12 months.
That is achieved because of dozens of meals companions throughout the county, like Dunedin Cares.
Kristina Garcia, Dunedin Cares Director, stated want has elevated for the reason that pandemic and plenty of can’t afford to buy wholesome meals. They’ve seen current spikes in households with kids looking for assist as federal meals stamp (SNAP) advantages are reducing as a consequence of federal funds for COVID/pandemic aid ending. Subsequently, Dunedin Cares’ focus is on wholesome meals for households, like meats, dairy, eggs, contemporary produce.
One other North County accomplice, FEAST, serves households 5 days per week, together with night hours for working households—and affords particular issues for households with kids, like offering a birthday cake on a toddler’s birthday!
The Free Clinic additionally coordinates JWB’s funded meals program, distributing pre-packaged meals to children at faculties, NFCs, and after college applications and filling meals gaps throughout weekends and summers…to the tune of 200,000 meals final 12 months!
Plus, by means of partnerships with 11 preschools, their Recent Sprouts program fosters wholesome consuming habits for younger kids, zero to 5, providing weekly contemporary produce, recipe playing cards, and even interactive exercise concepts to advertise connection at mealtime for households!
The Free Clinic additionally companions with JWB’s Neighborhood Household Facilities to inventory their pantries and help meals distribution efforts, reaching households the place they dwell and serving particular populations.
Anthony Verdeja, Household Heart on Deafness Director, stated, “We’re so grateful for SPFC. The deaf group did attempt to reap the benefits of the meals pantries within the space however weren’t in a position to talk with the parents working there. We fill that want as soon as a month.”
Verdeja additionally shared that many households are asking for extra meals, not essentially for themselves, however to share with others of their neighborhood, and that these households really feel safer understanding that may obtain as a lot meals as they want.
Due to JWB’s investments within the St. Petersburg Free Clinic, Pinellas households can put wholesome, nutritious meals on their tables…and take a minimum of one fear off their plates!
Jennifer Yeagley, St. Petersburg Free Clinic CEO, stated, “We might not be capable of hold kids wholesome, centered, and rising with out the crucial help of JWB.”
Watch the associated video at https://youtu.be/4ydOe6LUkGk
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April Putzulu | 727.804.6404 | email@example.com
Jennifer Dodd | 813.767.7895 | firstname.lastname@example.org