Adolescents/Youth (13-19 years)
The first in-school food bank is set to open in the fall of 2019 at Northglenn High School. In partnership with another local nonprofit that sources fresh food donations, our goal is to allow students to shop for enough fresh and non-perishable food items to provide enough groceries for them for an entire week. This food bank will provide a discreet way for students experiencing hunger to get the food they need without having to travel to another location. In addition, the Northglenn High food bank will serve any high school student in the district that has been identified as homeless.
This program will begin in August of 2019. We expect that students who utilize our food bank will be able to receive enough groceries for an entire week after a visit. This will allow students to better succeed in school when nutritional needs are better met for each child and his/her family.
Youth/Adolescents only (14 - 19 years)
School Fuel began in response to an increasing number of high school students reporting not having eaten for extended periods of time. The ability to obtain a snack in these situations is incentive for students to remain in class and gives them energy needed to learn. In the previous school year, Food for Hope delivered 2,000 snacks per week to Thornton High School & Brighton High School. During time spent in schools over the past year, it has become clear that this is a need in most school settings. One teacher at Coronado Hills Elementary shared that she spends $50-$100 per month to provide snacks to her hungry students. As a result, School Fuel is expanding to three more elementary schools in the fall of 2019. Food for Hope will be distributing 3,500 healthy snacks per week to help meet this need.
Having just completed our first couple years of this program, we received feedback from the school staff that many students are taking part in receiving the items we provide. We take just under 2,000 items a week and they never go to waste! Food for Hope was also able to provide extra snacks during testing weeks to ensure students weren't hungry while trying to concentrate on the task at hand. The principal reported at our fundraising dinner that students who need the food find comfort knowing that it is readily available, and are more likely to come to school and stay there with that incentive in place. We are also receiving requests for this program from additional schools in the area because they have heard of the success we are having at the high schools we serve.
Children ages 5 to 21
Children Only (5 - 14 years)
Food for Hope currently provides bags of nutritious food each week to 630 students at McElwain Elementary, Coronado Hills Elementary, Northstar Elementary, North Mor Elementary, Rocky Mountain Elementary, Mountain View Elementary, Riverdale Elementary, Woodglen Elementary, and Thornton Elementary. The food in these bags provides essential nutrition to children who don't receive enough to eat at home. Each elementary food bag includes 2 protein items, 1 vegetable, 1 fruit, 1 grain, and 2 breakfast items. The cost of each bag is approximately $3.00.
Due to community support, we have grown from serving one elementary school to nine schools in only a few years. Teachers often share stories of students who look forward to Fridays because they know they will be receiving their food bags to take home. One child stated that receiving his bag was "like trick or treating in a rich neighborhood". We also received a thank you note from a student that said, "My mother wants me to tell you thank you. She said thanks to you guys our whole family got to eat." We cherish these instances as reasons we should continue our service to help children thrive amidst the challenges that face their families.
Food, Agriculture & Nutrition
Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)
This annual food distribution was created to provide a full holiday meal to families in need, and give them the dignity of preparing a holiday meal at home on Thanksgiving. Every year over 300 Food for Hope volunteers gather to assemble 1,750 boxes that contain everything needed to prepare a full Thanksgiving dinner - including a turkey. Each box feeds 4-6 people, so thousands of local individuals in need are served through this event. Volunteers then help distribute boxes to families at the schools we serve and at three apartment complexes owned by the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless.
We receive dozens of thank you notes from families stating the difference that this food made in their holiday celebration. We take joy in providing for families in need during a time of year that can be especially challenging financially. We look at our ability to complete this program each year as evidence of the community's desire to help others.