KidsBites LunchBox Intern Reflects on Summer Experience with Philabundance
KidsBites LunchBox Intern Kayla Schieber shares her experience supporting our communities this summer:
On one of my first days a client said, “Bless you for being here” to me, which was something I never heard at any of my previous jobs. That was just the first of many examples of how I learned the impact Philabundance has in the community!
My name is Kayla and this summer I interned with Philabundance to help run the KidsBites LunchBox program, an initiative to help fill the Delaware Valley’s crucial summer meal gap by offering free and nutritious lunches to kids under 18-years-old, from May through August.
My main responsibility was to distribute free lunches made by Philabundance Community Kitchen, our culinary vocational job training program, to families with children. There were 175 LunchBoxes distributed at eight sites—with not one box left over—as close to 300,000 kids lose their school meals during the summer months.
I had previously heard that some children are able to get free meals through school, but I never really thought about what they would do about getting meals once school was out for the summer. Before I started my internship, I had no idea there were so many children hungry, especially in the summer without school food programs. It was especially eye-opening to hear that 30% of those who Philabundance serves are children.
As my time here continued it was amazing to see kids line up each day with their parents, and the excitement on their faces when they came up to me to get their lunch for the day. I was able to see what a difference distributing these lunches really could make in these kids’ lives firsthand. Thanks to Philabundance and its free distribution program, this summer is something I will not soon forget.