More than 40 schools, churches and community centers in Winnebago and Boone counties are offering free meals to people up to age 18.
It’s part of a national effort sponsored by the Department of Agriculture.
Registration and parental supervision is not required to participate.
Christopher Greenwood is Rockford’s Community Health and Prevention Coordinator.
“We have a high percentage of children who are receiving free and reduced lunch and breakfast in the schools," he says, "but when school is out, they might not get a full meal throughout the day. So, our sites are here to provide that nutritional gap.”
Greenwood said this is one of the most rewarding programs he oversees.
“Knowing that kids can eat … I mean, there’s nothing more fulfilling than seeing a kid sitting down eating and having a full stomach," he said.
The program begins Tuesday and goes through mid-August.