Many wonderful supporters of the kids helped by Backpack Meals have asked for a wishlist of items we need to fill our lunches. If you would like to purchase items for Backpack Meals, you can call us to have a volunteer pick up the items or deliver them to our warehouse in Bellevue, Monday through Friday between 7am and 3pm. Click here to see the list and get more information.
Annual Report for 2018-2019
Thanks to a supportive and generous community, Backpack Meals for Kids enjoyed our most successful and rewarding year in 2018-19. After eight years of operation, we begin the new school year of 2019-20 with heightened confidence in our long term financial stability.
From September through June, kids were the focus of all Backpack Meals activities. We strived to fulfill our core mission of providing healthy weekend meals to hungry children from preschool through 12th grade. We launched new initiatives and program improvements based on feedback from the community and the families we served. And we expanded our board and our outreach to the community. Click here to read highlights of the year and learn more.
LISTEN: KOMO NW Helping Hands
“Every Friday, hundreds of kids in the Bellevue School District head home with a packet of food. Each kid gets two breakfasts, two lunches and two dinners, plus some healthy snacks. Without these backpack meals, they’d go hungry.
Backpack Meals for Kids, a group of dedicated volunteers, has been filling this food gap for 8 years.
“I don’t know what we would do without it. I really don’t,” said Deb Kraft, director of K-12 counseling with the Bellevue School District.” Read more from Herb Weisbaum of KOMO news here.
Every weekend, children go hungry. In Bellevue.
For too many Bellevue school kids, the only meals they get are at school. On the weekends, they don’t have enough to eat. When children are hungry, everything else is harder, including learning.
The Backpack Meals for Kids program is working to fill that gap.
Backpack Meals for Kids provides free, easy-to-make meals each Friday so they have food to eat over the weekend. Backpacks are also provided free to children who need them when they join the program.
Because children shouldn’t go hungry on the weekends.
You can make a real difference
Here are some of the notes left by students who have received backpacks:
- “Thank you so much for giving us food so we don’t stay hungry. You guys are amazing and so kind.”
- “Thank you for donating food for us. I feel happy and appreciate what you do for my family.”
- “Thanx a lot. It tastes grat! I love it so much. Your very nise. So kind. Your the best!”
School staff also wrote to share their positive assessment of BPM:
- From Highland Middle School: “This program has greatly helped our students and families with sustenance, but also with connectedness. Students feel loved and appreciated when getting their food for the weekend.”
- From Tyee Middle School: I love the Backpack Meals program for many reasons. The most obvious is knowing that the kids are going home with the food they need for the weekend. They are so happy and it is wonderful to see. The program is also very easy for me and the kids to manage and maintain.”
- From Tillicum Middle School: “We receive emails from parents who are so grateful for the food. You are a wonderful support to our school and we are so thankful.”
In the News: Backpack Meals highlighted by Eastside Pathways
Backpack Meals is a partner with Eastside Pathways, a crucial organization supporting community service across the Eastside. Eastside Pathways recently highlighted Backpack Meals on their website. Thank you to Eastside Pathways for their support! Read the article here.
Backpack Meals has the generous support of many local organizations, including:
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Bellevue Sunrise Rotary
Domestic Hunger Grant of Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Assistance League of the Eastside
Knights of Columbus
Lester and Bernice Smith Foundation
And the families of many Bellevue & Redmond Churches and Mosques, including:
Eastside Christian Community Church
Holy Cross Lutheran Church
Muslim Community Resource Center, which coordinates their services with the Mosques on the Eastside
St. Thomas Episcopal Church
East Shore Unitarian Church
St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church
Cross-of Christ Lutheran Church
Aldersgate United Methodist Church
Bellevue First Methodist Church
The Champions Centre Bellevue
Newport Presbyterian Church
St. Louise Parish
Church of the Resurrection