How Milford is Supporting Families Facing Food Insecurity

How+Milford+is+Supporting+Families+Facing+Food+Insecurity

Amelia Valente, Chief Editor

As the pandemic approaches its 11th month and COVID cases in Milford continue to surge due to an increase in indoor gatherings, more families in our community and across the nation are battling food insecurity and hunger brought on by rising unemployment and our current economic crisis. According to NPR.org, nearly one in four households have experienced food insecurity this year, and researchers at Northwestern University estimate that food insecurity has more than doubled as a result of the economic crisis brought on by the outbreak, hitting as many as 23% of households earlier this year. Now more than ever, it is crucial that families in need receive support during this immensely difficult time. Our community is fortunate to have an existing network in place that addresses the urgent problem of food insecurity. From the Milford Humanitarian Coalition, to the Daily Bread Food Pantry and Milford Public Schools, there are resources available. Please read on to learn more about the programs Milford offers. If you or your family are in need please know there is support available to you. Alternatively, if you are in a position to help by donating food items, grocery store gift cards, money or time, this would be an ideal time to get involved. Your effort will have an immediate positive impact. Everyone needs and deserves access to fresh healthy meals so no child in our community goes hungry.

In conjunction with The Milford Humanitarian Coalition and the Hockomock YMCA, Milford Public Schools have implemented a free breakfast and lunch program in Milford for all students up to 18 years of age who are facing food insecurity. Free Grab & Go meals are available from 8am-10am and 11am-1pm, Monday through Friday in the Memorial School parking lot at 12 Walnut St. There is no registration or identification necessary, so families can simply drive up and receive their meals with no questions asked. Additionally, this program is now offering evening hours; families can go to Memorial from 5pm-6pm Mondays and Wednesdays to pick up 2 breakfasts and 2 lunches for each child, and Fridays from 5pm-6pm to pick up 3 breakfasts and 3 lunches for each child. Since schools have gone remote, many kids lack normal daily routines and structure, not to mention the students who depended on the breakfast, lunch, and snacks served at school as their primary source of food. This program ensures that children are provided with the balanced and nutritious meals that they need in order to learn and grow. According to Milford Daily News, Carla Tuttle, our Director of Food & Nutrition services, estimates that 2,100 meals are given out each week. If you want to support this program, you can drop off nonperishable food items such as tuna, macaroni and cheese, canned fruits and vegetables, oatmeal, and rice at the Milford High School cafeteria from 7am-3pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. There are also more organizations in Milford providing support for families during this time like the Salvation Army, and The Daily Bread Pantry where families can go and receive free bags of food and non-perishable items.

Now more than ever, communities need to work together and find unique ways to provide support for families and students who are struggling during these difficult times. Through their partnership with the Milford Humanitarian Coalition and the Hockomock YMCA, Milford Public Schools has implemented this free food program and shown their dedication to helping members of our community.