Orange and Black Packs supply food for homeless LASD students.

September 17, 2018

Orange and Black Packs supply food for homeless LASD students.

LUDINGTON — Ludington Area School District has begun a new program called the Orange and Black Pack with the goal of providing weekend meals for students in grades six through twelve who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The Board of Education will hear from the program’s coordinators, Donna Garrow and Amy Marsh, during its regular meeting tonight.

The Orange and Black Pack is a reusable shopping bag filled with non-perishable nutritious food items such as fruit cups, cereals, pastas, peanut butter, vegetables, healthy snacks, and other easily prepared items. The program’s goal is to distribute packs to approximately 70 students each weekend throughout the school year. At the end of the school year, the program will assist in connecting the students and their families with the summer program sponsored by Michigan Department of Education.

At the end of the 2017-2018 school year, LASD had approximately 70 students between sixth and twelfth grades who met the at-risk criteria based on the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act eligibility requirements.

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act defines “homeless children and youths” as “individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.”

The pre-meeting report states that the Orange and Black Packs was created through inspiration from the Lakeshore Food 4 Kids program, which is a program started independently by school district mothers and supplies meals during the week. However, the school-sponsored program is separate and is being partially funded from donations from Community Foundation for Mason County, the Epworth Grant Committee, and Women Who Care. 

The Board of Education meets at 6 p.m. in the O.J. DeJonge Middle School media center/library, 706 E. Tinkham Ave.

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