One in four children in Blair County do not know where their next meal is coming from. That’s why local folks started Mountain Lion BackPack Program back in 2011.
The nonprofit organization collects food and sends close to 1,200 full bags home with elementary school students in the Altoona Area School District for the weekend.
Amber Smith, the organization’s program director, said the need is there in Altoona, and the community’s support allows students to go to school with full stomachs.
“A lot of the students that have access to the program and are enrolled in the program do better in school as opposed to those that don’t have food,” Smith said.
Smith encouraged any family that needs food or cannot provide enough food for their children to sign up for the program.
“Education is so important nowadays, so we definitely want to help the kids in every way we can so that they’re successful in school,” Smith said.
As for their January food drive, the Souper Bowl of Caring asks folks to donate canned goods, such as pork & beans, canned pasta, and yes, soup.
“With the food drive, we want to get the community involved and, with the Super Bowl coming up, we thought, you know, how appropriate to have a Souper Bowl of Caring,” Smith said.
The food drive will last until the end of the month, and the cans will be distributed during the month of February.