National Impact

Why we do it:

Did you know that 13 MILLION CHILDREN are experiencing food insecurity? That’s one in six American children who may be struggling with access to food.

The consequences of hunger are much more than a growling stomach. Poor nutrition can result in a weaker immune system, increased hospitalization, lower IQ, shorter attention spans, and lower academic achievement. Children are fed during the school week by federal government programs. We want to make sure they’re getting nutritional meals over the weekend, too.

Blessings in a Backpack is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that distributed 2.2 million bags of ready-to-eat food to children during the 2020/21 school year at more than 1,090 schools in 46 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

Our Structure:

Blessings in a Backpack is a national organization made up of seven regional chapters and more than 1,000 volunteer-driven programs. We share the goal of preventing childhood hunger on the weekends for the kids who need us most.

How much does it cost?

On average, $175 will feed one child on the weekends for one 38-week school year through the Blessings in a Backpack program—in Louisville, the cost is $150 per child/school year. The results: nourished kids ready to learn. Food is an essential building block, and in this case, it is truly a blessing, especially to a food-insecure child!

Visit the Get Involved section of our website to find out the various ways in which you can help Blessings in a Backpack feed more children.

The facts about hunger:

What does it mean to be food-insecure?

A food-insecure household has limited or uncertain access to enough food to support a healthy life.

Childhood Hunger in the United States

Children are more likely to face food insecurity than any other group in the United States. Due to a significant rise in unemployment in 2020, and a corresponding increase in child poverty, it is projected that 18 million children (one in four) may be struggling with food insecurity. Click here to read an analysis from Feeding America that projects what hunger and food insecurity will look like for kids in the coming months.
Before COVID-19
  • Three out of four teachers say they have children in their classrooms who regularly come to school hungry.+
  • Three prevalent consequences of hunger in schools: inability to concentrate, poor academic performance, and headaches, and stomach aches.+
  • Nearly half (44%) of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or food stamps) are kids.**
+No Kid Hungry
**Center on Budget and Policy Priorities