HELENA — The 10th annual free summer meal program, available to children age 18 and under, has begun in Helena.
The “Munchtana” food truck rolled out this Monday and will continue serving kids throughout the summer. Free lunches are available at seven different locations on weekdays with most starting around 11 a.m.
Each meal will meet the required USDA nutrition requirements and will have an entrée, milk, veggies and a side of fruit.
The summer meal program will also hold a celebratory kick off barbecue with family activities on June 18 at Memorial Park.
MTN spoke with Robert Worthy, food service director, who explained that the meal program serves about 400 kids a day.
“A lot of parents think, ‘oh, my kid won’t qualify for this because of my income,’ and that’s not true — any child is welcome, regardless of their parents’ finances,” said Worthy.
There are no income limits or forms to fill out to receive the meals.
Worthy continued, “And when … school’s over, there’s nothing worse than a kid coming in last day of school [not knowing] what he’s going to eat because he’s either a free or reduced student or he’s not sure where his meals are going to come from, and that’s the reality we deal with.”
Meals are provided Monday through Friday at the following locations:
- Lincoln Park: 11:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
- Lewis & Clark Public Library: 11:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
- Ray Bjork: 11:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. (available until August 25)
- Memorial Park: 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
- Barney Park: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
- Helena Middle School: 11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
- Skelton Park: 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.
-Reported by Christine Sullivan/MTN News