By Ron Matz

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — More than 1.5 million meals will be served to needy children in Baltimore this summer.

Ron Matz has more on the expansion of a city-wide effort to make sure kids don’t go to bed hungry.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake handed out breakfast Tuesday morning. She joined the Family League of Baltimore’s Mobile Meals truck in an expanded effort to make sure children in Baltimore don’t go to bed hungry.

“During the school year most kids in Baltimore get a free or reduced lunch,” said Jonathon Rondeau, President of the Family League of Baltimore. “In the summer, there’s a gap in that. We provide meal sites throughout the city, but sometimes kids can’t get to them so we meet kids where they are, in housing projects, libraries and that sort of thing.”

The mayor tells WJZ there’s no excuse for any child to go hungry.

“This summer we have strengthened partnerships to ensure that all of our kids have access to nutritious meals because we know that good nutrition is essential to a child’s growth and development,” said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. “I urge families and community members to find a summer meal site in their  neighborhood.”

The goal is to serve 1.5 million meals to kids this summer in Baltimore, which would be a 20 percent increase over last year.

“In addition to serving two meals a day and increasing the number of meals served to children through Mobile Meals more than fivefold, we have further strengthened the program this year by incorporating reading and nutrition education lessons thanks to our Baltimore Super Summer initiative partners,” said Rondeau.

“Hunger is not always obvious.  Children who need free and reduced cost meals during the school year often need the same assistance during the summer months,” said Rawlings-Blake.

The Family League will serve two meals a day at 11 Mobile Meal sites in the city. There are more than 400 summer meal sites in the city.

“The Mobile Meals portion of it is pretty neat because obviously it can get out and cover more areas. There are a lot of fixed sites in Baltimore also that are also serving families and young people,” said Congressman John Sarbanes, (D) 3rd District. “The goal is to make sure that no child in Baltimore City is going to bed hungry.”

A complete list can be found by clicking here.

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