Food bank backpack program helps feed needy children

(WMC-TV) - One food bank program is helping hundreds of Mid-South students one backpack at a time.

Food at the Mid-South Food Bank will soon be on its way to soup kitchens and feeding programs across the Mid-South.  Some 200,000 needy people are fed by the food bank every year.

"Just to be able to come in here and pick up some of the things and to help along with our orders is just great," said food bank recipient Ruthie Williams.

One of the ways the food bank disseminates food is through its backpack program.  Students who live in homes where hunger is a problem are given a backpack filled with enough food to last the weekend every Friday.

"We pack in there six meals so that they can have something to eat on Saturdays and Sundays," said Mid-South Food Bank CFO Tonya Bradley.

The program starts with plastic bags being filled.  They eventually find their way into backpacks donated by area sponsors.

"So on Friday, a child gets a backpack filled with their meals," said Bradley.  "And then on Monday, they bring them back."

Organizers said the program has become a big success and a chance for young people to leave school for the weekend with a backpack filled with food.

"Three meals for Saturday, three meals for Sunday," said Bradley.  "It's very nutritious."

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