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Summer lunch for kids at the Grass Valley Library

Submitted to The Union

The Grass Valley Library is feeding more than just minds this summer by offering a free, healthy lunch to all children ages 18 and under, courtesy of the Grass Valley School District Child Nutrition Services and the Nevada County Public Health Department.

“We are excited to collaborate with these organizations to feed children in our community,” said Suzanne Grass, Food Services director for the Grass Valley School District Child Nutrition Services. “Many children do not have access to healthy, nutritious meals during the summer. This is a fantastic way for families to participate in learning activities while eating a nutritious lunch.”

The Summer Lunches Program is a partnership between the Nevada County Community Library, The Grass Valley School District, and the Nevada County Public Health Department. It will span the length of the summer starting Thursday and ending Tuesday, Aug. 14. There is no income requirement to participate and all are welcome.

Each weekday at noon children ages 0-18 can come to the library for a free, nutritious meal and a fun, interactive activity. While adults will not be provided a full meal, snacks for parents and caregivers have been donated by the Briar Patch Co-op.

Rachel Schneider, the youth librarian spearheading this project, has planned after-lunch activities focused on learning, movement, and health.

“We wanted to make sure that kids are having fun as well as having a great lunch,” said Schneider.

The Grass Valley Library staff has planned multiple entertainment options for children and teens to enjoy after their meal thanks to supplies provided by the California Library Association. Activities will include art projects, science experiments, yard games, bubbles, and more. Children and families are welcome to stay in the library as long as they like after lunch.

This program comes as a welcome need for families in the Grass Valley area. Currently 60 percent of children in the Grass Valley School District receive free or reduced lunch throughout the school year. When school is no longer in session, children and families may struggle to find food to fill this gap.

With the Summer Lunch Program in place at the library, youth in the Grass Valley area will be able to find nutritious meals and enriching programs to help them grow.

Jill Blake, director of Nevada County Public Health said, “Summer Lunch at the library is an important step towards increasing the food safety net in our community. We are delighted to partner with the Grass Valley Library and the Grass Valley School District on this project.”

With such an exciting program in the works, this is shaping up to be quite a delicious summer in Grass Valley.

Summer Lunches at the library will take place weekdays from noon to 1 p.m. throughout the summer. Food will be served from 12-12:30 p.m. with activities starting at 12:30 p.m.

Lunch must be eaten at the library and cannot be taken from the site. For more information contact Rachel Schneider at rachel.schneider@co.nevada.ca.us or 530-470-2695.

Source: Nevada County Libraries.

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