CAO announce feeding programs

PORTSMOUTH Community Action Organization of Scioto County (CAO) is putting their best foot forward and helping feed people in the community.

The organization is hosting two different food giveaways, one the Family Food Box Distribution and then the other, feeding the children in the community with seven days’ worth of meals at many drop off locations.

This summer’s Family Food Box Distribution is a partnership between the Community Action Organization (CAO) of Scioto County and the Ohio Association of Food Banks.

Beginning Tuesday, June 9, 2020, CAO will be providing fresh fruit and vegetables as well as dairy products to Scioto County families. Contents of the food boxes may vary from week to week. Families may drive-thru and pick up a box of food at Portsmouth Elementary School parking lot. No congregating at sites will be permitted. Families should stay in their vehicles and speak to site attendants to facilitate the transaction. Food boxes will be provided from 10 a.m. through 3 p.m., or until supplies run out.

For questions regarding the Family Food Box Distribution program, please call Pat Oliver or Luanne Valentine at 740-354-7541.

The June distribution days are: Monday June 15, June 22, and June 29 at Portsmouth Elementary School.

The Community Action Organization of Scioto County also sponsors the Summer Youth Feeding Program.

CAO will be providing meals to drop sites throughout Scioto County. Families may drive-thru and pick up meals for children under the age of 18 or up to 21 with disabilities. Lunch and breakfast will be provided. No congregating at sites will be permitted. Families should stay in their vehicle and provide the number of children to site attendants. The attendants will then place enough meals for each child in the vehicle. Each child will receive enough meals for seven days. Sites will be open for 1 (one) hour.

“We actually have food coming from Ohio Food Banks that started last week Monday. In the years past, we had taken the food delivery truck out in the county, this year because of everything that is going on, we only have one drop right here at the Portsmouth Elementary School. It is the same thing we have done, but we are going at it a different way,” Pat Oliver, operator of the youth program with Community Action said.

“This year is different, Oliver said that as there are no eligibilities, it is just open. They fill out one application the first time they come to pick up food, then when they come again, they will be on a check-off list and they will just check them off, so they don’t have to fill out the paperwork again. Oliver said that they are staffing with their youth. “We have a year-round youth program and students in the school year are in services or they are working.”

For the program this summer, they have many sites throughout the city and county, and they provide food for seven days. The youth workers for Community Action, are ages 14-21.

“Families go to a drop-off and we try to have as many meals as we need. And if they need more, then we have a backup crew that will take food. It is for every child in the house. We didn’t take applications for that and we don’t have any restrictions on that, as long as it is for the youth.” She humorously said that these meals were not steak and potatoes, but they are shelf-stable meals. The meals are for breakfast and lunch, seven days’ worth and they encourage the parents to come because they tend to be a little heavy,” Oliver said.

Oliver shared that the folks at the CAO and the CAO youth workers both enjoy it. She said that this is a way for those youth workers to see how they can give back. ‘They are getting paid, but they are seeing what a need is. We are just hoping they get some leadership and team building out of it.”