When schools closed in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, many children were left without access to affordable and nutritious food. But one non-profit organization in Massachusetts is working to ensure the children in their community don’t starve.
When the school year suddenly ended, Waltham Boys & Girls Club decided to be creative with food distribution.
“When the school closes, we really turn our efforts,” said Waltham Boys & Girls Club executive director Erica Young.
For organizations, that means online programming and food delivery.
The staff packs more than one hundred balanced breakfasts and lunches each weekday to share with children in the city.
“We have the resources and capacity to package, put the van, go to the community. Be in an actual environment where children need us so we can serve there,” Young explained.
The club is set up in three locations every weekday morning, distributing food in bags.
Now, during the pandemic, no questions were asked. Usually, they will linger at the birthplace, maybe even playing music and talking with children. But during this social distance, it was a fast process while wearing a mask.
“Things are difficult, for everyone,” said Isabel Small, who works at Waltham Public Schools and lives in the local housing authority complex where food is delivered.
He sees children every day and says some depend on food.
“On Friday, they did give extra, which is great, because it helps them all weekend to Monday when they can come again,” Small said.
This summer, the club hopes to slowly welcome the children back directly and they will also start distributing fast food in more locations around the city.
“Food insecurity is really a hidden problem that exists in all our communities, especially Waltham. With this crisis and pandemic, it really strengthens it,” Young said.
Waltham Boys & Girls Club also serves dinner every weekday night at different locations. The club plans to post the location of their summer food delivery on their social media pages.
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