Community
July 26, 2021
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The Redwood Empire Food Bank offers free drive-through meals for children again this summer

June 11, 2021

From June 7 through August 6, the Redwood Empire Food Bank will offer free and healthy breakfast and lunch to children 18 and under across Sonoma County through their Summer Lunch program. 

When schools break for the summer months, thousands of growing children from low-income families in our community lose access to free and reduced-cost school lunches. Summer Lunch fills the meal gap by delivering healthy meals to at-risk children throughout Sonoma County. 

“We are grateful for our partnership with Santa Rosa City Schools Kitchen to continue providing meals to children over the summer while school is out,” said Maria Fuentes, Every Child, Every day Manager at the Redwood Empire Food Bank. “It’s free and all children are welcome even if they don't attend that school district.” 

Last year, the Summer Lunch program transitioned to grab-and-go breakfast and lunch and offered care packages of groceries for the family that could be taken home to prepare and eat. With this change, the Redwood Empire Food Bank was able to serve 94 percent more meals to families in need than in previous years—a rewarding feat considering the increase in participants brought on by the pandemic. This model will continue this year to ensure the safety of recipients, volunteers, and staff. 

There will be 38 summer lunch sites this year, a 32 percent increase compared to the summer of 2020. In addition, the Redwood Empire Food Bank will offer W5 Project registration for participants at the sites, allowing families to pick up a week’s worth of groceries without their children present. W5 is a client participation project. Participants are invited to complete a profile once, receive a W5 club card, and have access to all Redwood Empire Food Bank distributions with the swipe of their card. 

To find your nearest location, call 2-1-1. For immediate assistance or more information about the summer lunch program you can call the Redwood Empire Food Bank directly at (707) 523-7903.