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Child hunger nonprofit receives $25,000 from Brookfield Renewable

Donation will help kids experiencing hunger during COVID-19 pandemic
Jun 22, 2020

Full Plates Full Potential, the Maine-based nonprofit working to end child hunger statewide, announced a $25,000 donation from Brookfield Renewable. The donation will bolster the Full Plates Summer Meal Emergency Fund, which supports summer meal programs statewide.

“Brookfield Energy’s donation is timely and critical. Their support will help tens of thousands of kids access nutritious breakfast and lunch meals this summer,” said Justin Alfond, co-director of Full Plates Full Potential.

“We are in unprecedented times, more kids and families are facing hardships and summer meals are needed more than ever. Their support is so important and we are grateful.”

Last summer, over 400 summer meals sites operated and supported 727,000 meals to kids statewide representing about 30% of eligible students. This summer, the nonprofit claims it is in the worst public safety and economic crisis in over 100 years.

Recent data from the United States Department of Agriculture and the Census Bureau analyzed local levels of food insecurity for the overall population and children due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The results illustrate that Maine children will see the highest increases of food insecurity and it will reach every part of the state.

“The work of Full Plates, Full Potential in providing nutrition access for Maine’s children very much aligns with our core value of community stewardship and our priority to support communities where we have renewable energy operations," said Andy Davis, spokesperson for Brookfield Renewable. "We are grateful for the opportunity to give to the Summer Meal Emergency Fund to help overcome challenges created by the pandemic and to be a part of this impressive effort to reduce food insecurity in Maine."

On July 1, summer meal programs will open and have an opportunity to serve all kids through Aug. 19. Sites are preparing to open with important safety measures, new operations and delivery models. Full Plates Full Potential in partnership with the Maine Department of Education and other nonprofits from our leadership committee launched the Summer Meal Emergency Fund. The fund will give grants to summer sites during the week of June 22. Full Plates received 77 applications requesting $445,000 of funds.

“Summer meals are essential for all students and summer sites have plans to serve all children. Summer sites are preparing for a huge spike in meals served,” said Anna Korsen, Director of Advocacy and Partnerships at Full Plates Full Potential.

“Summer meal programs have requested funds to help them create great access to meals in their community. The funding will help sites pay for increased costs of food, safe food packaging, PPE, staff and transportation of meals to kids. Summer meal access is an extremely challenging time for kids experiencing hunger and Brookfield’s support will make a huge difference.”

Summer Grants up to $8,000 will be given to schools or organizations running summer sites. Grants will help pay for the increased costs of preparing more meals, safe packaging for breakfast and lunch meals, and transportation costs of distributing meals.

In the 184,000 total student population, 43% of students qualify for free and reduced school meals.

At least 80,000 students qualify for free and reduced school meals Full Plates Full Potential is on a mission to end child hunger in Maine by maximizing student participation in federal child nutrition programs. The Summer Grant partners with nonprofit advocates, local businesses and restaurants that advocate for policy changes at the state level, granting funds and providing technical assistance to schools.

Started in 2014, the organization hosts year-round events and fundraisers, and promotes the FEED KIDS cause marketing initiative. Learn more at fullplates.org.

To learn more about the Full Plates Full Potential Summer Meal Emergency Fund or to apply for funding go to fullplates.org/summeremergency.

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