By Christine Hockin-Boyd, Community Lifeline Center
It’s mid-July. School has been out for a month. It doesn’t start again for another month. Many families in our community depend on meals being provided for their children at school. So where does that leave them in mid-July? With some hungry kids.
Community Lifeline Center (CLC) serves Collin County communities by guiding residents in crisis back to self sufficiency and independence. We offer a variety of programs to provide assistance and support to bridge short term financial instability.
3 Meals-in-a-Bag is designed to help struggling families with daily nutritional needs. We work with the Community Food Pantry in McKinney to ensure that those in our service area do not go hungry. On average, 15 visitors to CLC per week are looking for assistance to feed their children. Where does that leave us in mid-July? With empty shelves.
This week, Trinity Presbyterian and First Baptist (McKinney) children surprised CLC with a donation of 66 bags. “This donation will last about three weeks” according to Christine Hockin-Boyd, Executive Director of CLC. “On August 1st we are hosting a back-to-school event, and if we are not already out of the bags by then, we hand out the remainder then. And we’ll be empty again.”
You can help by purchasing items from our list to provide 3 Meals in a Bag. It is important that items do not require refrigeration. CLC will add the recipes for these and other inexpensive and nutritious meals. For less than $20, you can feed a family of four for an entire day or more! “Part of our nutritional program offering includes smart shopping strategies, stretching a food budget and getting more bang for your grocery buck”, says Megan Hickman, Case Manager. “So your donation of 3 Meals in a Bag not only helps feed a family physically, it also gives us the opportunity to educate our clients toward self-sufficiency – always our goal at CLC. Teaching them to fish, instead of giving them fish. We do not continue to assist clients time after time, making your donation much more valuable than a bag of groceries. ”
For breakfast we ask that you choose from cereal, granola, protein or fruit bars, dry or canned milk, peanut butter, complete pancake mix (just add water) and syrup.
For lunch and dinner, we ask that you choose 2 of the meals below and provide the listed ingredients:
Meal 1: Canned ham, instant potatoes, green beans, carrots, fruit
Meal 2: Canned roast beef with gravy, noodles, spinach, fruit
Meal 3: Pasta, spaghetti sauce, corn (optional), fruit
Meal 4: Spam, canned pinto beans/Ranch beans, corn, fruit
Meal 5: Chili, pasta or rice, fruit
Meal 6: Chicken and rice (canned chicken, chicken rice mix, mushroom soup), green beans, carrots, fruit
Meal 7: Veggie soup (canned veggies & beans, tomato juice, pasta or rice, soup seasoning), crackers, fruit
Meal 8: Tuna casserole (canned tuna, noodles, cream of mushroom soup, evaporated milk), English/green peas, carrots, fruit
Purchase a re-useable bag at the grocery store and bring it all to CLC at 503 N. Kentucky in downtown McKinney, M-TH 8:30-2:30. For more information, call 972.542.0020 or visit http://www.communitylifeline.org
And remember, we are always better together.