The belief that nonprofit organizations strengthen our community, combined with faith in our readership and humanity in general that we all have talents to share, The Castle Pines Connection is committed to featuring a different local nonprofit each month. This month we highlight SECOR.
Remember during your school-age years, that feeling of excitement as the last few minutes of Friday afternoon ticked away before the bell rang to dismiss you for the weekend? Many students feel that excitement to get to the weekend and their plans with family and friends. But for a shocking number of students in Douglas County and beyond, those final few minutes before the bell rings can bring bring worry about whether or not they will get enough food to eat over the weekend.
According to SECOR, a Douglas County-based organization committed to ending suburban poverty in our area, more than 37,000 (one in six) elementary-aged children in Douglas and Arapahoe counties are not eating on the weekends due to suburban poverty.
SECORCares Food for Thought program provides healthy food for the most vulnerable children by giving them meals to take home from school for the weekend. Of the 23 schools the program serves, nine are part of Douglas County, which represents about 125 students.
“Food for Thought serves 23 schools, approximately 800 children each week. We help students of all ages in the Douglas County school district. Our weekend [food] bags are packed during the week and delivered to our school partners for distribution before children go home for the weekend. Each bag serves a family of four for the weekend, to help not only the student, but his/her family. These bags mean the difference between coming to school hungry Monday or coming in prepared to learn for their future,” said Lisa Long, SECORCares Food for Thought coordinator.
Although Douglas County is one of the top five wealthiest counties in our nation, SECOR says there are currently more than 50,000 families in Douglas, Elbert, and Arapahoe counties living in poverty.
“SECOR serves 42 zip codes in Douglas, Elbert and Arapahoe counties. We have a free food market in Parker, and a mobile market that travels to Highlands Ranch, Castle Rock and Aurora, besides our Food for Thought program,” Long said.
Today, SECOR has requests from more than 25 new schools representing more than 1,500 children each week who need meal assistance for the weekend. For more information on the program, or how you or a group you are part of can help provide food for children, please visit secorcares.com/food-for-thought.
We invite readers to send suggestions for nonprofit organizations to feature. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to learning more and sharing information about nonprofits in our community throughout the year.