Information from their site: https://idahofoodbank.org/programs/backpack-program/
During the school year, many low-income children have access to nutritious meals through their school’s free-and-reduced breakfast and lunch program. Unfortunately, on the weekends these same children go without food. Our Backpack program helps these children by providing weekend food support throughout the school year.
About the Backpack Program
The Idaho Foodbank’s Backpack program ensures that students who are chronically hungry have access to adequate food over the weekend by providing them with a backpack full of nutritious, kid-friendly food every Friday during the school year.
Going without food over the weekend makes learning difficult when children return to school on Monday.
TEACHER: "Every Friday, each participating child receives a backpack with enough food for two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners and two snacks. Meals consist of nutritious, child-friendly items that are easy to prepare and taste good!"
Survey Results Tell the Story
Because the contents of each Backpack must be lightweight, nonperishable, nutritious, and consistent, we cannot rely on donated food and must purchase all the food used in the backpacks. Although our bulk-buying power helps us reduce the cost of purchasing these items, the program is still one of our most expensive, with an annual budget of close to $400,000.
"Kids have told me they would starve over the weekend without the bags. They are so happy to have the security of food bags and know they will not go hungry. Their parents are grateful as It helps kids feel cared for, their needs are met, and they do better at school." -SCHOOL COORDINATOR
We learned that due to the donation of 100 Women Who Care Pocatello, the Idaho Food Bank Backpack program was able to build 815 backpacks for area school children. They were very excited to be able serve more children who are hungry and to help them with food security.
Acorn Fund Pocatello Inc.
ACORN FUND POCATELLO INC.·
Local Nonprofit that provides compassionate relief to chronic and acute homelessness by
-offering support in obtaining gainful employment,
-offering respite from the difficulties of living at homeless shelters by providing social and educational activities,
-offering hope by organizing community drives to provide essential and non essential items to assist in gaining employment, daily living, and obtaining long term housing.
We were impressed by the ladies who started this Charity. Their story is a great one. When Alisha Bailey moved to Pocatello, she wanted to help some children with Christmas Gifts at Aid For Friends Homeless Shelter. She visited with the Director and when she found out there were a lot more kids that hoped for Christmas gifts than she had originally anticipated, she enlisted the help of some friends. Pretty soon they learned that most requested items were ones that would help a person be able to get a job, work at that job, or other items that might help them get on their feet and out of the shelter. A tiny Acorn of help was all that was needed to get people self-sufficient. Often requested items were an ID card, steel toed boots, work coats and gloves, a way for employers to get in touch with the person, etc. Simple items that usually cost less than $100 make or break their ability to go to work. So the Acorn Fund was born.
We were excited to learn that our funds were a big help to the people in need in our community. The ladies at the Acorn Fund were able to get a discounted day at Deleta Skating rink to give those families at the shelter a day that wasn't about food, hunger, or cold, but about being together. They were able to purchase work clothing, and shoes and even some Track Phones. The Shelter is not a place they can stay all day, so it is very difficult to find them when prospective employers call. Thank you to the Acorn Fund Pocatello for all of your efforts in the community and for running to the store to help purchase immediately needed items. We are glad we were able to help in your work.
Our February Charity
Excerpts from Article By Kathy Venemon President, Zonta Club of Pocatello
November 6, 2017 Idaho State Journal POCATELLO — Zonta Club of Pocatello
Zonta’s Families in Crisis Program is an ongoing service project benefitting local children, parents and individuals who encounter a financial crisis. Assistance request examples could include money for rent because of the loss of a job, car repair to get to a job or paying past-due utility bills for a family whose services face termination. One-time requests for funds are submitted by referral from a public assistance agency or other organization and are then considered by Zonta’s Families in Crisis committee. These small grants help recipients overcome circumstances that could leave families devastated or leave them in more dire conditions, requiring greater recovery efforts in the future. All grants are strictly confidential.
“Our grants are a small way of helping a family out of what could become a big problem,” says Janie Gebhardt, the chairwoman for the Families in Crisis Committee.
Donations may be sent to: Zonta Club of Pocatello, P.O. Box 4174, Pocatello, ID 83205
Zonta Club of Pocatello is part of Zonta International, an organization with 1,200 clubs in 65 countries and geographic areas. Zonta works to advance the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy. For more information on the group, please follow them on Facebook by searching Zonta Club of Pocatello. https://www.facebook.com/pg/zontapocatello/about/