BUCKSPORT, Maine (NEWS CENTER) – Workers in school cafeterias across the state worked all summer to provide kids with lunches when school was not in session.
Maine has the highest child hunger rate in New England. One in every five children struggles to get enough to eat every day.
Glen Redman, Director of Food Services for RSU 25 has been running the summer lunch program at the G.H. Jewett School for three years—feeding dozens of kids in the area.
"We're doing probably anywhere from 60-70 to 105 students we did in one day for the summer food program,” Redman said.
He said this summer was the busiest year yet.
"This year I'm going to say probably participation has doubled since last year,” he said. “So it's done really well."
The program is one of at least 12 of its kind statewide sponsored by the Department of Education.
"I think it's been rewarding for everyone,” Redman said.
As Redman and his staff prepare for the school year ahead, he said as many as 60-percent of students at the school receive free or reduced lunch.
In the state as a whole, more than 80,000 kids receive free or reduced lunch, according to the USDA.
"We offer breakfast and lunch during the school year and sometimes for some students that could be all they get for the day,” he said.
Redman just one of many unsung heroes across the state working to provide kids with something many take for granted.
"Definitely ready for another year,” he said.
NEWS CENTER launched its Million Meals for Maine campaign. Our goal is to raise money to supply one million meals to help those in need across the state. Click here to learn how you can chip in.