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Phoenix food bank helps alleviate summer student hunger

(Getty Images Photo/Scott Olson)

PHOENIX — With school being out for summer, students who depend on two of their meals being provided in a school cafeteria now face a challenge on where to get them.

St. Mary’s Food Bank in Phoenix has stepped up to sponsor the Summer Food Service Program for Children and will provide meals at community centers across the state.

The purpose of the program is to help ease demand for summer food, especially for children who take part in the free breakfast and lunch programs during the school year.

“We know that kids a lot of the time come to rely on the breakfast and lunch that they receive through the schools,” St. Mary’s Food Bank spokesman Jose Urteaga told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Wednesday.

“During the summer obviously those meals go away, but hunger does not. So we come in and try to bridge that gap.”

Free meals will be provided for anyone under age 18 in more than a dozen cities around Arizona from Monday through Friday, including more than 70 in Phoenix.

Anyone interested in the program can text “FOOD” to 877-877 and receive a message with information on nearby sites. Food can be dropped off Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the St. Mary’s Food Bank locations.

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