A star-studded prelude to explain a program designed to ensure Cleveland children get healthy meals during the summer.
CLEVELAND – A virtual summit began Wednesday to advertise Cleveland and Atlanta as two cities, each receiving more than 100,000 meals to ensure local children and families have access to healthy foods.
Partnership for a Healthier America Honorary Chairman (PHA) and former First Lady Michelle Obama say this is a worthwhile cause.
“We want to make sure that regardless of where you live or your budget, you have access to good food for your family,” says Ms. Obama.
PHA also selected funny Netflix characters from the hit television show “Waffles and Mochi” to promote the “Pass the Love” campaign.
Eric Gordon, president and CEO of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, says Cleveland was chosen because of the work the city has done to fill the food gap and lower the city’s poverty rates.
“Unfortunately, here in Cleveland we have the highest child poverty in the nation. 51% of Cleveland children live below the poverty line, ”Gordon told 3News.
The new partnership will provide 144,000 meals and meal sets that will be delivered to families whose students depend on the school system for two meals a day. It’s strategically just in time for the summer break.
“I think the timing is really great if we can bring these grocery boxes and resources into our community and involve students and families as the world opens up again,” says Gordon.
The aim is to ensure that all students have fresh, healthy food and a fun interactive experience.
“With recipes and activities that will make you laugh, help you study, and of course fill you with great food,” says Ms. Obama.
The new program complements CMSD’s 40 food locations and ongoing partnerships with USDA & Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
The grocery boxes will be launched locally over the next four weeks and the entire program will soon be expanded nationwide.