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SOURCE Chartwells School Dining Services
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Oct. 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Chartwells-Thompson Hospitality (CTH) and Duval County Public Schools (DCPS) in Jacksonville are working together with the Second Harvest's Backpack Program to provide meals to hungry school children each weekend this school year. CHT and DCPS today announced their participation in Second Harvest's Backpack Program, an initiative that provides supplemental groceries to the households of approximately 1,000 hungry school children in Duval County.
As a result of this partnership, 100 fewer children will go hungry each weekend in Duval County. Chartwells-Thompson's $10,000 donation will be used to enroll 100 eligible students into the backpack program for the 2013-14 school year, ensuring their nutritional needs are met during the weekends when food at home may be scarce. Each Friday, a bag of food will go home in their backpacks to provide meals for the child and other members of the family.
"At Chartwells-Thompson, our students are our number one priority and we are always looking for ways to nourish their bodies and service their communities," said Eugenie Caroselli, Chartwells regional vice president. "We are proud to support the wonderful work and service that Second Harvest provides for Duval County through its various feeding initiatives, including the backpack program. We know that providing students access to food seven days a week is one thing that can help them succeed in the classroom and improve living conditions for their entire household."
"The students that CTH and DCPS are sponsoring are in the neediest of communities -- forty percent of children in these areas are living in poverty where families have little to no access to fresh, healthy food" said Kimberly Mariari, director of community engagement for Second Harvest, "In the spirit of feeding north Florida and nourishing hope for the one in four children who are food insecure in our community, we are thankful for the support."
According to Dr. John Cook, the author of Child Food Insecurity: The Economic Impact on our Nation, 20.8 percent of children in Florida are experiencing food insecurity. His study for Feeding America reveals a 4.9 percent increase in Florida since 2008, that ranks the state as having the 10th highest rate of food insecurity in the United States for children under 18 years of age.
Second Harvest in North Florida is the oldest and largest program of Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida (LSS). Today, Second Harvest distributes more than 14 million pounds of food each year in Duval County and strives to feed over 2,700 hungry children as part of the backpack program.
About Chartwells School Dining Services
Chartwells, a division of Charlotte, NC-based Compass Group, provides dining services for 585 public school districts and private schools, comprising approximately 4,000 separate elementary, middle and high schools nationwide. For more information about Chartwells Thompson School Dining Services, visit www.eatlearnlive.com and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
About Thompson Hospitality
With over 4,000 employees, Thompson Hospitality is one of the largest minority owned businesses in the United States and the largest minority owned foodservice company in the world. For more information about Thompson Hospitality, visit www.thompsonhospitality.com.
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