What is GAP Pack Ministry?!?
The GAP (God Always Provides) Pack Ministry is a food outreach mission that targets nutrition insecurity within our local student population. Though many of the students served by this ministry are enrolled in their school’s meal-assistance program, this only provides for weekday accommodations. Unfortunately, many of these same children do not have sufficient food in the home to cover the time away from school, leaving a “gap” in their ability to healthily sustain.
Our “GAP Packs” fill that void by providing selected items selected to ensure their weekend will be supplemented with kid-friendly, nutrient- and vitamin-rich foods. The backpacks are filled toward the end of the week, and delivered to local schools. The teachers give the packs to the students at the end of the last day of the school week to take home. Upon returning to school, the students bring back their packs for refilling, and the cycle continues.
Does every student in the school get the GAP Pack? That seems like a LOT of resources!
No, only families who have been identified by the Community in Schools counselors based on their individual needs are delivered food packs. This gives us the opportunity to serve the students with the deepest needs on each campus in the local community. These CIS counselors also serve as a communication liaison between families and churches.
What if those families are already receiving assistance through the local food banks?
Food bank items, and other assistance from community programs, are designed to provide for an entire family, and these rations may only last a week or two depending on the number of people included. GAP Packs provides specifically to target student hunger by incorporating kid-friendly, nutrient-rich foods that will sustain them throughout the weekend away from meal-assistance in school. We include in packs a selection of items, including juice, milk, cereal, granola bars, raisins, peanut butter and jelly, etc.