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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Backpack program qualifies for grant

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Monett's Food for Thought Backpack program has been selected to receive a matching grant for funds up to $3,050 from the Community Foundation of the Ozarks (CFO).

The backpack program provides weekend food items for 48 Monett students at a cost of $16,000 per year. It is funded by donations from individuals, churches and organizations in the community.

The program is a ministry of First Christian (Disciples of Christ) Church of Monett in partnership with Ozarks Food Harvest and Monett Elementary School.

Contributions made between April 1 and Sept. 30 will be matched dollar for dollar to help students receive better nutrition.

"The timing on this grant couldn't have been better," said Jo Stair, chairman of the Food for Thought committee. "The backpack program had the public's attention when we first started, but support in the past year has fallen off. The committee met recently to discuss what we could do to get the program in front of the public again, so this grant is a tremendous opportunity."

The Food for Thought Program provides nutritional weekend food that a schoolage child can prepare independently. Food for Thought works with the school district to identify groups of 24 chronically hungry children who rely heavily on school meal programs.

These children are often hungry from the time they leave school on Friday until they return to school on Monday. Each week, Food for Thought provides supper for Friday and breakfast, lunch and supper for Saturday and Sunday with additional nutritious snacks.

"Donations are made in commitments of three years," said Stair. "We are encouraging those making the commitments to get that paid off now while this matching grant is available. Especially those who are finishing a three-year pledge."

To contribute to this program, checks need to be payable to: First Christian Church of Monett c/o CFO, 603 Fourth St., Monett, MO 65708 or call Rev. Ron Stair at 235-7233. Brochures are also available at the church.

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