This week’s Hometown Hero is Emma Jenkins-Sullivan, Program Coordinator for Food for the Summer. The Food for the Summer program is dedicated to providing local children with lunches during the summer months.
Last year, the Food for the Summer program provided 48,000 lunches to children in the community who rely on school lunches for their daily nutrition and who may not have access to a meal for lunch in the summer months. Over 650 volunteers provided children, ages one to eighteen, with a meal prepared by city school employees at 13 different open sites.
“If kids are hungry during the school year or during the summer, that really affects not just that day, but it affects them even going into the academic school year,” said Jenkins-Sullivan.
The program doesn’t just hand out nutritious meals. Volunteers partake in fun games and activities to engage the children and ensure they enjoy their time. They also have given out hundreds of books, courtesy of Book Harvest. UNC Students, local high school students, and people from all walks of life volunteer their time to make sure all children receive a meal and have a laugh.
Emma loves working with children and is dedicated to making sure no child goes without a meal for the day. She became interested in the idea of food security verses food insecurity during her undergrad years. Emma became passionate about hunger prevention, expressing how important the concept is to her and for the community.