Life is about making choices. Unfortunately, for some families in Maricopa County, those choices are choosing between paying for groceries or child care and paying utility bills or rent. Many parents give up on the dream of going to college to provide for their family. Making these types of choices makes it tough to break free from the cycle of poverty.
Ms. Crawford, though, did break out of the cycle of poverty after experiencing what it’s like to go to school hungry. She said, “I remember I couldn’t wait to go to school to eat breakfast and lunch. Sometimes I didn’t get dinner. Or dinner was basic things – bread – sometimes sugar with bread.”
Ms. Crawford’s now a kindergarten teacher in the valley and witnesses firsthand the impact of a child coming to school hungry. “When they’re hungry, they’re not learning, when they’re not learning, they’re missing out on their education.”
Valley of the Sun United Way is ending hunger in the classroom through Breakfast in the Classroom and WeekEnd Hunger Backpack program. One out of four kids in Maricopa County doesn’t know where their next meal is coming from.
“They’re already starting to break that cycle of poverty and hunger,” said Ms. Crawford. “Because now they’re getting a quality education because they’re ready to learn, they’re focused. They have the energy.”
There are now 51 schools with 33,000 students participating in Breakfast in the Classroom. It takes about 10-15 minutes to serve, eat, and clean-up. During this time, many teachers incorporate morning activities such as taking attendance and giving announcements. Breakfast in the Classroom ensures that all students eat together during a pre-class activity and no one is singled out.
A one-time donation of $4,000 ensures that a nutritious breakfast is provided to all students at a school long-term! Your donation creates the infrastructure to provide breakfast in the classroom at participating schools. All donations make a big difference.
Unite Against the Cycle and end hunger in the classroom. Donate today at vsuw.org/breakfast!