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The Salvation Army is filling a hearty need for children this summer

ALPENA, Mich. — A large number of school kids regularly rely on free lunch, but some of them may face hunger this summer. Local groups like The Salvation Army are filling in providing summer lunch programs.

The school year has finally rolled over into the summer season. A day camp can give Northeast Michigan parents a much needed break. “Whatever we can do to help, we’re here for that,” said Salvation Army captain Amy Cedervall.

More than 43 percent of students qualify for free lunch, but they’re out of school now and may not have access to quality meals. “Kids focus better when they’re fed,” said Cedervall.

Four out 10 families live below the federal poverty level. “Parents are used to sending their kids to school to eat breakfast and lunch and only having to feed them one meal,” said the captain.

The salvation army is one of many groups setting up to feed hungry children at no cost to struggling families.

“I can’t imagine being a child and feeling hunger and not knowing how to fix it,” said Cedervall. “That’s something they shouldn’t have to worry about.”

Here’s a list of free summer food programs throughout Alpena:

  1. The Friendship Room at St. Bernard’s Church,  322 W. Chisholm Street – call 989-354-8018
  2. Boys and Girls Club of Alpena, 601 River Street – call 989-356-0214
  3. Feeding Kids Ministy at Ella White School, 201 N. Ripley – call 989-354-7522
  4. Salvation Army Church, 722 N. 2nd Ave. – call 989-354-5147