PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, so does the need for food.
And as the new school year prepares to kick off virtually, the School District of Palm Beach County is testing out a new way to help feed children who depend on school meals.
It’s a need that’s difficult to ignore.
"64% of the families are in need of some meal benefit," said Allison Monbleau, the Director of School Food Services for the School District of Palm Beach County.
Monbleau said that after the COVID-19 pandemic caused schools to go virtual, they knew there would be a tremendous need for food. So they set up food pick-up locations around the county.
"At one point, we were serving around 20,000 students per day," Monbleau said.
Monbleau said those numbers have dropped and she worries it’s because parents aren’t able to make it to the drop-off locations. So for the upcoming school year, they came up with a new program.
"We are going to be piloting this at four schools later in September, to load up the bus with coolers full of all the meal kits we’re providing at the grab and go," Monbleau said.
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, buses will deliver either breakfast and lunch or dinner. Monbleau said they are starting with four bus stop locations spread out throughout the county to see how the program works, but she added the goal is to make sure no child is going hungry during this pandemic.
The four locations have not been determined yet.
"We are trying to do this so that the kids can be healthy and also learn," Monbleau said.