The following is a testimony given from a Boys & Girls Club volunteer about their programs dedicated to feeding hungry kids:

“One of the things Boys & Girls Clubs of the Tennessee Valley is most proud of is being able to feed the Club youth we serve, including the summer breakfast meals we have been able to provide youth who attend Club sites located within public housing facilities. The summer breakfast program is very appreciated and well-received amongst Club youth, as well as parents and guardians of Club members. The program features many different choices: some days, cold items such as fruits, yogurts and cereals are offered, with yogurt parfaits being a favorite among the children. Other days, easy-to-prepare hot foods such as pancakes, sausage and eggs were provided (staff and children at these Club sites love to cook together through cooking Clubs). Further, non-traditional fruit items, such as kiwi, were introduced to Club youth. We also have contracted providers develop summer breakfast menus (ensuring the meals are nutritious) and deliver the meals to the Club. Finally, juice or milk was served with each meal.

Just the summer breakfast meals program at our four Knox County Club sites provided 200 students breakfast daily for 40 days throughout the summer program. The program became so popular that there was a huge increase in Club attendance, as Club youth were showing up just to be able to eat a well-balanced breakfast at the Club- likely because they did not have food at home. Parents were very appreciative of these meals being offered to Club youth, Club youth were enthusiastic about the food provided to them, and Club staff noticed improved attentiveness and positive behavior throughout the day from those who had come early to eat breakfast at the Club during the summer.”

United Way of Greater Knoxville is extremely proud to partner with the Boys & Girls Club of the Tennessee Valley; not only do they offer valuable physical and intellectual programs to the kids in our community, but they’re dedicated to making sure that no child goes hungry- especially during the summer, when school-provided food is unavailable. Steady, nutritious meals are imperative to children’s development, and we are more than happy to help provide healthy food to Knoxville kids. Change doesn’t happen alone. To live better, we must LIVE UNITED.

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