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DOING GOOD

The Doing Good blog follows area charities and social service agencies.

About Amy Umble: Amy Umble writes about religion and social issues affecting the Fredericksburg community.

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I have to wonder if the children of New York City are just a little bit disappointed to hear the ice cream truck but instead get a nutritious lunch.

Still, it’s a pretty clever idea. According to the No Kid Hungry blog, about 1 million NYC students receive free meals each day. But only a third of them receive meals when school is out. It’s a problem seen around the country–and right here in the Fredericksburg area–most families who rely on free or reduced lunches during the school year struggle to find help throughout the summer months. I’ve talked with families who say that between the rising energy bills and grocery bills, summer is just a brutal season. Moms talk about skipping meals so their kids can eat, and kids talk about eating Ramen noodles all the time. Some children talk about going without food, too. It’s hard to hear.

In New York, officials piloted a Summer Meals Truck which brings food to parks and playgrounds in underserved communities.

Here in Fredericksburg, such a program doesn’t exist. But many area food pantries are trying to meet the needs. They’re struggling to keep food on their shelves. In summer, more families come for help. But regular donors also go on vacation and get busy, so donations drop.

Want to help?

SERVE: Food donations may be dropped off at 15 Upton Lane, across from the Stafford Courthouse, Monday and Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Tuesday and Thursday, 1–4:30 p.m.

Financial donations may be mailed to: SERVE Inc., Box 1357 Stafford, Va. 22555.

To volunteer with SERVE, call 540/288-9603.

Fredericksburg Area Food Bank: To find out more about the food bank, visit fredfood.org or call 540/371-7666.

Nonperishable food can also be dropped off (and later given to the food bank) at these locations:

Electrical Equipment Company

4617 Mine Rd

Fredericksburg, VA 22408

540-891-8828

Avery-Hess Realtors

Route 17 North

774 Warrenton Rd

Fredericksburg, VA 22406

540-373-9300

Allstate Insurance

Southern Stafford County, Rt 218

43 Town and Country Dr, Suite 105 (Near Giant Food)

Fredericksburg, VA 22405

Hours: Monday – Friday, 8 am to 5 pm

540-368-9000

Y.M.C.A

South Stafford Area

212 Butler Rd

Stafford, VA 22405

540-371-9622

Y.M.C.A

Spotsylvania

5700 Smith Station Rd

Fredericksburg, VA 22407

540-371-9622

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