Feeding America

Youth & Family

An estimated 20,320 children, age 18 and younger, who live in Southeast Nebraska are considered food insecure. The Food Bank of Lincoln and its partners bring hope and nutritious food to around 6,500 students and families each month. We serve Lincoln-area schools as well as 28 rural communities in our 16-county service area.

Our Child Hunger Programs include:

BackPack Program
School Food Markets and Pantries
LPS Emergency Pantry
• Student-Parent Voucher Program
Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) 

Please Note:  We have to purchase most of the food for our Child Hunger Programs. Therefore, monetary gifts are the best way to provide much-needed food to children and their families in our service area.

BackPack Program

Serves 2,048 students weekly

The BackPack Program began during the 2004-05 school year at Clinton Elementary School, sending home food-filled backpacks on Friday afternoons with 50 kids. The program quickly took off. Today, this program has grown and serves around 2,000 children and their families.

The program seeks to help students who qualify for their school’s Free or Reduced Lunch Programs by providing a food-filled backpack to the child and family over the weekend or during a school break. The BackPack Program is a way to help these students and their families until students return to school where they know they can have breakfast or lunch.

Each year for more than 15 years, LPS and Food Bank of Lincoln, along with community partners, have teamed up to present the Extra Mile Walk, a fundraiser for the Child Hunger Programs in Lincoln. Learn more here.

Donation Impact: It costs about $275 for one student to receive weekly backpacks for an entire school year. Donate now.

School Food Markets and School Pantries

Serves about 4,500 students monthly

School Food Markets and School Pantries aim to provide a variety of nutritious, healthy foods to children and families. Our goal is to work with schools and community partners to distribute food in a safe, easily accessible environment.

Menu-specific items are delivered to local schools and are supplemented by a limited number of donated goods, bakery items and fresh produce as those items are available. Each school allows all students, parents of students, and school staff to walk through the market and select food based on the allocated amount.

This market model removes the stigma of needing help and supports choice, offering dignity and compassion to the people we serve.

Some schools are a better fit as a School Pantry site. This is a scaled back version of a School Food Market that includes the Food Bank delivering shelf-stable and fresh produce items to schools. Teachers and advisors provide food to students and families as needed.

Donation Impact: It costs about $125 for one student to get market food each month for an entire school year. Donate now.

LPS Emergency Pantry

In response to the high need of students and their families experiencing hunger, the Food Bank, in cooperation with Leadership Lincoln and Lincoln Public Schools, opened the LPS Emergency Pantry.

Any LPS or private school family can come to the pantry to receive food assistance. The amount of food families can have is based on family size.

The pantry is located at Bryan Community School (300 S. 48th St.) and is open Monday/Wednesday/Friday from 3-5:30 p.m. when school is in session.

The pantry is currently closed for the summer and will reopen when school resumes this fall.

Summer Food Service Program (SFSP)

Children need good nutrition all year long. When school is out during the summer months, many children no longer have access to even one nutritious meal each day. Summer Meal Programs help fill the gap.

The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is a federally-funded, state-administered program that aims to provide nutritious meals to children in low-income areas during the summer months when school is not in session. Our goal is to ensure that children get nutritious food during the summer months so they are ready to learn during the school year.

The Food Bank of Lincoln, in partnership with numerous community partners and the USDA, sponsors free summer food sites that are open to the public and operate in low-income areas where at least 50 percent of children residing in the area are eligible for free and reduced-price school meals. Learn more and see the meal schedule here.

Summer EBT (SEBT)

For the summer period of May 16 through August 31, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer (Summer EBT) will provide eligible school-age children with $120 in benefits to help keep them fed when school is out. These funds can be used to buy select food items. DHHS estimates that 175,000 students or 80,000 households will be eligible to receive SEBT benefits. Learn more and check your eligibility here.

Open Accessibilty Toolbar