PES and Food Pantry Provide Weekend Meals

By Kaileigh Deacon


For many families in Washington County, meal insecurity is a real issue with too many wondering where their next meal is going to come from. For the children in these families, going to school means a consistent meal provided by the school lunch and breakfast programs. However, for these children, food at home over the weekend isn’t a given, it is an uncertainty. Princeton Elementary School is partnering with the Irene Chadbourne Ecumenical Food Pantry to make sure children get food on the weekends. 

The weekend backpack lunch program has been active at Princeton Elementary School for the last three years and helps to make sure that kids have food to get them through the weekend. Backpack meals include breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks for the weekend. Meals are designed so that there is very little preparation involved so kids can make them on their own if necessary.

Parents can contact Principal Charity Williams to get their child enrolled in the program; there are no qualifiers and nothing to fill out. On Wednesday Principal Williams picks up the meals from the food pantry where the bags are prepared and brings them back to the school. While the kids are out of the school during recess, Principal Williams goes into the classrooms and puts the bags of food in the students’ bags so that they don’t have to feel bad about getting the food. 

“We’re hoping that more families will utilize the program,” Principal Williams said. “It’s been very beneficial for the families that use it.” 

Students don’t have to qualify for the free or reduced lunch program, and any child who needs the program will be able to take part in it. Parents who are interested in getting their child or children (all children in a family may participate) enrolled need to contact the school at 796-2253 or through their Facebook page.