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Healing Summer Hunger

Hunger and food insecurity continue to affect vulnerable populations among our keiki and kupuna, especially during this pandemic. And as struggling families prepare to beat the summer heat, many organizations are gearing up to help heal summer hunger.

Since the start of the COVID-19 impacts, the state Department of Education has been serving breakfast and lunch for food insecure children 18 years and younger at 81 different Grab and Go sites across the state. But now that the regular school year has ended, so has Grab and Go.  Fortunately, a new program will be starting up soon to help continue feeding hungry keiki. This week (and next week on Kauai), 52 schools statewide will begin the Summer Food Service Student Meal program serving breakfast and/or lunch through July 17, 2020.

Additional free meals for children are being served at several locations including Kama’aina Kids, YMCA, PACT and Palama Settlement.  These Non-HIDOE Summer Meal Sites can be found around the island of Oahu and in Kahului, Maui.

Meanwhile, many seniors who once participated in Congregate Meal programs in their neighborhoods no longer have access to these meal gatherings and regular socialization. Even those who have the financial means to shop for groceries are often anxious or afraid to leave the safety of their home.

Thankfully, there are many resources available to provide food support to our kupuna. The State Executive Office on Aging has compiled a list of agencies and non-profit organizations in every county providing food support as a result of COVID-19.  Please see the AGING & DISABILITY RESOURCE CENTER FOOD RESOURCES COVID-19 SUPPLEMENT for a complete listing. Some services may have lapsed or modified their schedules so please check the corresponding websites for these agencies first to ensure resources are still available. For more information on resources in response to the coronavirus, visit our COVID-19 Response webpage.

Mahalo, your Friends at the Office for Social Ministry.


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