Rural Summer Feeding Program: “We are So Thankful.”


Thanks to a grant from the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation, this is the first summer the Food Bank has expanded the Summer Food Service Program to rural counties. This growth includes some rural communities from Langley and Grove in the north, to Idabel and Broken Bow in the south. The program provides prepared lunches for all children under 18 years. For students and their families, it is a huge help during the summer when they don’t have access to school meals. In an unexpected twist, Elizabeth and her family were extremely grateful for the summer meals at the Grove Library, but not for reasons one might anticipate.

At first Elizabeth’s family wasn’t going to participate in the meal program at the library, although they liked the great summer reading and enrichment programs they put together for the children. “My daughter has severe food allergies and has been hospitalized several times as a result. For instance, she can’t even be in a room where flour is used for cooking.”

So, when the family decided to check out the Summer Food Service Program that was available, they were overwhelmed. “When we went to see the food program, we learned how the food was packaged. Each item was sealed and my daughter could select the items that wouldn’t harm her. She was overjoyed. Our family can’t go out to eat in a restaurant. Coming here is so special for my daughter, and it is an extraordinary treat for our family. This is an outing we wouldn’t ordinarily have. It is like going out to eat for us. We are so thankful for this food.