student with food from BackPack Program

photo: Feeding America

The BackPack Program helps alleviate child hunger by discreetly providing hungry children with bags of nutritious and easy-to-prepare food every Friday afternoon, so they have food to eat throughout the weekend. Although free and reduced breakfast and lunch programs provide significant nutritional benefits to students during the school day, many disadvantaged children do not have access to regular meals when school is not in session.

Each BackPack contains:

  • 2+ breakfast items (cereal, oatmeal packets, graham crackers, granola bars)
  • 3+ entrées (mac & cheese, PB & J, Spaghettios, tuna, soup)
  • A loaf of bread
  • Milk card for a gallon of milk (distributed every other week)
  • Egg card for a dozen eggs (distributed every other week)
  • Fresh fruits
  • Canned vegetables (distributed monthly)
  • 2 snacks (cookies, popcorn, pudding, etc.)

Menus change each week to provide participating children with variety.

“I like the BackPack Club because there is good food, healthy food, and something new every week. It helps Mom not have to worry about food.”
-Program Participant

Who we serve

The BackPack Program serves nearly 4,700 students in 220 schools across 22 counties.

Complete list of schools
Program fact sheet

BackPack Toolkit

Partner schools, click here for the BackPack Toolkit.

New Schools

The BackPack Program continues to grow.  We are excited to talk to potential new BackPack partner schools about enrolling in the Program throughout the school year.

Please contact the Food Bank to learn more about the onboarding process.

How you can help

To make a monetary donation, click here and choose “Children’s Programs” in the dropdown menu. To designate your donation to a specific school, please include it in the Partner Agency Name/Number field.

For more information about the Backpack Program, please contact:

Betsy Dickson
Senior Director, Children’s Programs
(518) 786-3691 x233