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By KELLY RICHARDSON
ELIZABETHTOWN — A local meal program for children plans to celebrate its growth with the community next week.
New Hope Community Church in Elizabethtown and America’s Second Harvest in Kentucky’s Heartland have joined to begin a Kids’ Caf Program Wednesday evenings at the church on. Children are scheduled to ride buses to the church to receive a meal, and they get a sack lunch on Sundays. The official kickoff of the program is 6 p.m. Jan. 28.
The event will include games, activities and a live radio broadcast along with the meal.
New Hope Commnity Church started its feeding program on a much smaller scale in the summer of 2007, said Nelle Thomas, program director at New Hope. It began when she and others at the church picked up a few children to take to Wednesday church services. On their way, the children complained of being hungry, so they allotted meals for the kids every week.
The group began feeding about 20 to 30 children that summer, but now provides meals to 150 to 200 kids, Thomas said. As demand grew, the food bill became more than the church could handle.
“It’s too big for me,” Thomas remembers thinking.
Thomas eventually was put in touch with Tami Delaney, development director of America’s Second Harvest of Kentucky’s Heartland Food Bank, who began helping the church in April 2008.
This month, the two have joined forces to start an official Kids’ Caf Program, which is a national feeding program for children and includes education on nutrition and other activities.
“It’s really exciting,” Thomas said.
Thomas said people at the church have become passionate about the program. She knew it would be worth the challenges it presented.
“We’re in it for the long haul,” she said.
For more information on the program, contact Delaney at (270) 769-6997, or the church at (270) 737-6645.
Kelly Richardson can be
reached at (270) 505-1747.