Imagine sitting in school and trying to focus on learning, but you are hungry. This is the reality that many children face today in northeast Ohio. Numerous studies show that when children attend school with full stomachs, they are better able to focus in the classroom. Teachers see hunger in their classrooms every day and are trying to find ways to combat it with their own resources. We knew that more could be done and thus our Birdie Bag Program began.
In addition to our Birdie Bag Program, we also offer Birdie Bin pantries at local middle and high schools in Kent. Birdie Bins consist of snacks and other food items that can be eaten immediately or taken home, as well as full-size toiletries and detergent. Birdie Bins allow older children to shop for their needs with more discretion. If a teacher notices a child could benefit from the pantry, they ensure that student is able to pick up the items they need.
We currently serve children and families in the Kent school district, with the goal of expanding our service area. Each of these schools has an on-site Birdie Bin: