CAO raised $10,000 to feed hungry kids

PORTSMOUTH — The Scioto County Community Action (CAO) hosted the 2016 Shamrock Shuffle 5K with a fundraising goal of $10,000. The goal was successfully met, and the funds will be allocated towards helping to feed hungry children in Scioto County.

Luanne Valentine of Scioto County CAO, said they are delighted about meeting the goal for this year’s Shamrock Shuffle 5K.

“We are really happy about that, because we know that there is a real need in our community,” Valentine said. “We are not happy about the fact that there are hungry kids in our community, but if we are able to help fill that need, not only to meet the hunger needs, but to also make sure that the meals are nutritious, then that is one less strain on our youth.”

Scioto County CAO partners with the Scioto County Juvenile Court for backpack preparations each week for children to take home.

“We have been partnering with the Scioto County Juvenile Court, and they have been providing some manpower to help us get those backpacks put together each week. Then, we get them over to the Head Start Program, and they are distributed to 300 kids each week,” she said. “Each child gets two meals to take home over the weekend. They a get a free lunch during the school day, and then they still have a nutritious meal to eat over the weekend.”

Their efforts to help feed hungry children in the county continue throughout the summer.

“During the summertime we actually becoming a summer feeding site through the Ohio Department of Education,” she said. “And because of that, we are able to apply for free weekend take-home meals through the Ohio Association of Food Banks, so we do that as well and the we’ll have our Mobile Farmers Market again this year. We haven’t put in an application yet this year, but we think that it will be available. We have already applied for 22 feeding sites for the summer.”

The Scioto CAO staff, local community, and sponsors make it all possible, according to Valentine.

“We are extremely appreciative of our staff members who contribute not only financially, but their time. Without the community who comes out and participates in the Shamrock Shuffle, and our sponsors, we wouldn’t be able to do it without all of them,” she said.

Valentine said they are looking forward to next year’s Shamrock Shuffle, and already have the date of March 18, 2017 picked out.

“We are going with the date of March 18th, which is the day after Saint Patrick’s Day next year, but we always partner with the Celtic Club, and they pick the day when we have the parade, so we work in conjunction with them,”she said.

More information regarding the 2017 Shamrock Shuffle will be announced.

By Portia Williams

[email protected]

Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.

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