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'Pantry packs' designed to tide kids over on the weekend if they experience food insecurity

Posted at 7:45 AM, Jun 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-17 09:45:42-04

BOUNTIFUL, Utah — There’s a friendly competition underway between different departments within Davis County government, but the real winners are thousands of local school kids dealing with food insecurity.

The contest began as a team-building project with employees at the Davis County Assessor's Office, but it quickly spread to other departments, including the Davis County Sheriff's Office.

They're competing to see who can make the most pantry packs.

The packs consist of two day’s worth of basic meals for local school kids who may not have enough to eat at home over the weekend.

The ziplock bags include two items for breakfast and lunch plus several snacks.

READ: Mobile food pantry fights childhood hunger in Weber County

Children eligible for these typically qualify for reduced cost or free meals at school.

The packs are designed to hold them over during the weekend and are distributed through the Bountiful Food Pantry.

"Our original goal was to collect enough to make 1,000 pantry packs,” said Davis County Chief Deputy Assessor Lisa Manning. “Right now we're at about 1,500 and we have two more weeks of donations, so we should reach, I'm guessing, probably around 2,000 pantry packs."

"It's been so much fun to turn it, kind of into a competition for other teams,” said Deputy Jennifer Schow. “To be able to get together and rally and get all the pantry packs for these kids that need food."

READ: Student-run food pantry within high school teaches teens skills

The need is real.

The Davis County School District currently has more than 15,000 students who qualify for free or reduced cost lunch.

The Bountiful Food Pantry serves more than 3,000 pantry packs to students at 44 local schools throughout Davis County.

The students in need can discreetly go to the office to pick them up and place them in their backpack before leaving school for the weekend.

If the student doesn’t have a backpack, one will be loaned over the weekend.

If you know someone who needs this extra food, or if you would like to donate to the cause, click here.