Parkland C.A.R.E.S to raise money to provide meals for children

 

When you think of the Parkland School District, hungry students are probably the last thing you would imagine.

"When we started those numbers were at 25 percent this year they are now at 27 percent," said Parkland C.A.R.E.S Food Pantry Executive Director Katrina Sundstrom.

That's the percentage of students in the district receiving free or reduced cost lunches, Sundstrom said.

She says the food pantry is not affiliated with the school district, but those statistics are powerful evidence that hunger hides in plain sight.

"We wanted a place that when the families come in to they come in and are dignified. They walk in the doors into this pantry that has been built for them and they will shop for the items in the pantry, choose the items off of the shelves that best suit their family and their needs," Sundstrom said.

Although Parkland C.A.R.E.S. is now part of the Second Harvest system it won't officially open until June 26.

Sundstrom says you can help now by volunteering or making a donation, either to the Food Truck Food Drive or on Parkland C.A.R.E.S website.

"We're going to be asking people to give less than a dollar a day $29 a month that is going to provide 44 meals for a child," Sundstrom said.

Parkland C.A.R.E.S. may be new, but they are already looking to the future. It is rolling out a weekend snack pack program for kids and down the road a mobile food pantry to give to those who are unable to get to them.