Archived Story

Children eat free meals this summer

Published 11:07am Thursday, May 23, 2013

There is such a thing as a free lunch this summer for children 18 and younger.

“We have offered it for the past several years,” said La Resa Griffin, food service manager for Southern Foodservice Management. “It’s an extension of the lunch program, and the purpose of it is to provide food during the summer.”

Hot meals will be available Monday through Friday, June 3 through Aug. 9, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Stephens Elementary School.

Lunch is free for children, and adults can purchase plates for $2.50.

Griffin said the program is open to all children, not just Stephens Elementary School students.

“Kids are home by themselves or with babysitters during the summer,” Griffin said. “They can be visiting from out of the county or even out of the state.

“If they can get to Stephens, they’re able to have a hot meal all during the summer.”

Meals to be served will meet school lunch guidelines, ensuring nutritious options for the children, Griffin said.

Griffin said in past years they have averaged serving 310-325 meals per day.

“Our numbers increase every year,” Griffin said. “Last year we had a couple of days where we served in excess of 500 meals.”

Griffin said nothing is required for those coming to the lunches – no registration or any type of forms or documentation.

“It’s hard to make people understand sometimes that you truly just come and eat,” Griffin said. “Nobody asks you to sign up or show anything.”

Children must eat their lunches at Stephens cafeteria.

Children who want to take a plate to go must pay the adult rate of $2.50.

“I feel like it’s just an economical way for everyone to have lunch,” Griffin said. “We just really want everyone to come out and feel welcome.”

People should enter through the side door of Stephens.

For more information call Griffin at 256-234-8673.

Free lunches will also be served to children at Dadeville Elementary School and Reeltown Elementary School June 3-28, Monday through Friday, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Free breakfasts will be served from 7:15–8 a.m.

Plate cost for adults is $3 for breakfast and $4 for lunch.