Summer feeding programs open in June

The city of Lake Charles and the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury have announced the dates and sites for their annual summer feeding programs. Both programs are free and open to children 18 and younger or who are disabled and enrolled in a state recognized educational program.

The Lake Charles program will serve breakfast and lunch at 21 sites across the city. Last year the program served 157,776 meals during its operations in June and July, Johnnie Mouton, assistant director, said.

“The city has the same philosophy as the school system,” he said. “We believe all children function better if they receive a breakfast and a lunch. They can think better, play better and be better citizens.”

Located at recreation centers, churches and public schools, the sites are “strategically located so everyone should be able to find a serving time for a nutritious hot meal,” he said.

The program requires no registration, forms or income verification for participation, therefore all children who fit the age range or demographic requirements are welcome to participate.

The program does not provide supervision or activities beyond the serving hours, however, Mouton said many feeding sites coincide with city summer camps where families can find low-cost summer enrichment if they enroll.

The parish oversees the summer feeding program in cities and towns outside of Lake Charles city limits. Last year the program served more than 20,000 at its 11 sites. Felicia Davis, program director, said the program is a vital resource for families, many of whom are employed but rely on the school lunch program to make ends meet during the school year.

“A lot of our parents are working and they’re just doing the best that they can,” she said.

All sites are open Monday-Friday, June 3-July 26, but will be closed on July 4.

For more information on the city program, call 491-1270, and for the parish program, call 721-4030 ext. 5111.

””School LunchLance Cheung / CC BY 2.0

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