By Katelyn Tivnan | NECN.com
A new food truck is hitting the streets of Worcester, Mass., and it’s on a mission to get nutritious food into the mouths of hungry kids.
“Over 46,000 kids receive school meals, but in the summer months, it goes way down to maybe 19-percent,” says Jean McMurray of the Worcester County Food Bank.
The new truck is being run by the Worcester Public Schools in partnership with the Worcester County Food Bank.
It’s the first of its kind in the city, and it will be making stops at the two state pools, passing out breakfast and lunch.
“We are now able to stop at locations we couldn’t before because of building and utility logistics,” says Donna Lomardi.
The truck’s custom air conditioning system will allow it to store up to 1,000 meals that will be handed out to kids across the city every single day.
Nationally, only one in seven kids eligible for the summer meals program participates in the summertime. The truck is a new approach to trying to bridge that gap.
“Where are the kids? Let’s get the food to them and change the dynamic we want them to return back to school energized and ready to learn,” says USDA regional administrator James Arena-Derosa.
Kristy Collazo’s 4-year-old son was eager to grab his breakfast. She thinks the truck is a great idea and will help a lot of families.
“I think it’s an excellent program because kids can have nutritious breakfast if they don’t have the opportunity at home,” she says.
“We certainly want to make sure kids have enough to eat,” says Arena-Derosa, “but also that they’re eating the right things such as whole grains fruits and nonfat dairy.”