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West Orange Times & Observer Friday, Jun. 3, 2022 3 months ago

OCPS providing free summer meals for children

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Each meal served during the summer will include fresh fruits and vegetables, an entrée, and milk.
by: Annabelle Sikes Staff Writer

Orange County Public Schools is doing its part to help keep children healthy throughout the summer. 

OCPS is providing free breakfast and lunch at 224 locations across Orange County. 

Each meal will include fresh fruits and vegetables, an entrée, and milk, with all menu items previously taste-tested by students, and approved by at least 80% of the group. 

Lora Gilbert, senior director of the OCPS Food and Nutrition Services, said the summer meals are critical for the health of many of the county's children. 

"Hunger does not end, nor does the need for fresh fruits and vegetables, milk, or protein every day," Gilbert said. "We want parents to know that children have access to nutritious meals, Monday through Friday, at no charge, all summer."

The meals will be available at schools with summer programs, summer camps and several churches, in addition to six branches of the Orange County Library System.

OCPS is planning to kick off the summer meal program with a "Summer Spike" event on Wednesday, June 8, at the OCPS Academic Center for Excellence.

Keynote speakers at the event will include Florida Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Nikki Fried, and Chief of School Nutrition Programs, Southeast Region USDA, Kirk A. Farquharson. Students enrolled at the school will also have the opportunity to enjoy games, free food, music and activities.

Parents who wish to find nutritional site locations and serving times can call 2-1-1 or click here. 

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Annabelle Sikes is a staff writer at the West Orange Times & Observer, Southwest Orange Observer and OrangeObserver.com. She graduated in May 2021 from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor's degree in journalism and a minor in sociology.  Her past...

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