A $15,000 private foundation grant to the YMCA of Callaway County will permit three more sites for free sack lunches in Fulton this summer to anyone age 18 or under.
Patty Miller, executive director of the YMCA of Callaway County, said there are no income restrictions on the free lunches. Youngsters must eat the lunch at the site and also have an opportunity to participate in reading or physical activities.
Miller said the private foundation providing the grant cannot be revealed until the nationwide summer lunch program is announced later this month.
To offer sites for the free lunches, the YMCA is teaming up with the Fulton School District, the Oestriech Municipal Pool, the Soup Kitchen, the John C. Harris Community Center, and the Central Missouri Food Bank.
The YMCA grant makes it possible to offer three more sites and extend the Fulton School District's free lunch program an extra month to include all of July.
The YMCA also is providing a program to encourage students to read. It also offers physical activity games and programs for the youngsters.
The three Fulton sites where the YMCA is now offering free lunches until July 27 to anyone age 18 or under are the YMCA at 1715 Wood St., the Oestriech Municipal Pool on Business 54 beside Fulton High School, and the John C. Harris Community Center, 350 Sycamore St.
Rhonda Fletcher, director of food services at Fulton Public Schools, said the school is providing sack lunches that the YMCA will hand out at the YMCA and the city pool. The Soup Kitchen at the John C. Harris Community Center and the Central Missouri Food Bank will provide the free sack lunches distributed at the Harris Community Center.
Miller said the YMCA will provide free admission to the city pool to the first 25 youngsters who bring a book to read during lunch.
"This is an effort to make sure children keep their reading skills sharp during their summer vacation," Miller said.
Free lunches at the city pool for anyone age 18 or under until July 27 will be from 11 a.m. to noon, at the YMCA from 11:15 a.m. until 12;15 p.m., and at the Harris Community Center from 11 a.m. to noon. Lunches will be available Monday through Friday except on the July 4 holiday.