Local soup kitchen needs donations for Snack Pack Program

Joan Harding, left, of the Village of Collier, and Eileen Cancellieri, of the Village of Duval, make snack packs at the Wildwood Soup Kitchen. The snack packs are made for students at Wildwood Elementary School.

More than 300 students are relying on the food provided by the Wildwood Soup Kitchen’s Snack Pack Program this year.

Barb McManus, president of the soup kitchen’s board of directors, said the number of students the program serves has doubled this year. 

To help meet that need, the Wildwood Soup Kitchen is holding a donation drive event Saturday to collect snacks and funds for the Snack Pack Program. From 1 to 4 p.m., volunteers with the soup kitchen will collect food and donations at the Village of St. Charles postal station on Bailey Trail.

“We serve (the students) each Friday they have school,” said McManus, of the Village of St. Charles. “They get free lunch at school, but many don’t have food at home during the weekends, so we provide that.”

Weekend food programs like the soup kitchen’s Snack Pack Program help keep kids fed who might otherwise go hungry through the weekend. Many of the students the program serves are from low-income families who can’t afford extra food, so the donations of pudding cups, packaged tuna and canned fruits and vegetables help bridge that gap.

Read this story and many others in Thursday's edition of the Daily Sun.