Free Lunch Programs Across South Jersey Provide Meals for Families

By: David J. Detweiler, Writer / Follow South Jersey Child Welfare Intern

BRIDGETON, N.J. — Free lunch programs all around South Jersey have done their part in providing families with meals during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hamilton Township’s School District is an example of that. Hamilton participates in the National School Lunch Program, which offers families and their children the opportunity to pick up meals from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Wednesday. Staff and volunteers also are delivering food to those who are in need and lack transportation. Social distancing standards have been enforced along with mask-wearing due to COVID. This program was previously featured on Isaiah Showell’s “What’s Good,” which you can find here.

Vineland is not only serving free meals to people in its school district, but to out-of-district residents as well. In-district residents can receive their week’s worth of meals from 7 to 11 a.m on Mondays at Vineland High School South. Preschool students can get their meals at the same time, but at Dallago Preschool instead. Vineland will distribute meals to out-of-district residents at the same time but at different locations. Anyone who doesn’t attend Vineland’s Public Schools can go here to find what site suits their needs.

Bridgeton School District is serving free meals until its September 8 start date. Their summer feeding Program includes a two-week menu and multiple locations for picking meals up. Pick-up locations include Street Elementary School, Quarter Mile Lane Elementary School, the Bridgeton Hall of Fame, Alms Center, MLK Way, Buckshutem Road Elementary School, Bridgeton Family Success Center, Life in Christ Ministries, and The Marino Center. The district will serve three days’ worth of breakfast and lunch on Mondays. Bridgeton will then serve four days of meals every Thursday to last until the following week. Serving times for these meals are noon to 2 p.m. on both days.

Cherry Hill, one of the biggest school districts in South Jersey, is also serving free meals up until August 31. From 10 a.m. to noon on Mondays, students will be provided with two breakfasts and lunches. Students can pick up three breakfasts and lunches every Wednesday at the same time as well. Cherry Hill East and West High Schools will serve these free meals. You can visit Cherry Hill’s website for further details here.

Everywhere you look, New Jersey is helping students and their families get through these tough times.

This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.