For the last two years a group of communities of faith and local non-profits have gathered to discuss ways to address the issue of Food Insecurity in Lower Merion. We know that this issue is found in every community and just because of the relative affluence of Lower Merion does not mean that there are not those who suffer from food insecurity.
Our efforts have focused on the reality that roughly 800 children take part in the free and reduced lunch program in the Lower Merion School District. During the summer, many of these families do not have options for these children. One wonderful program, lead by Zion Baptist Church in Ardmore is the Box Lunch and a Book. This program serves roughly 75 children in the Ardmore and Bryn Mawr communities. But that still leaves the majority of the 800 underserved.
In an attempt to address this disparity, we joined with other concerned groups to create the Lower Merion Summer Cafe. With this effort, we reached an additional 25 children, but it is not enough.
Recently, a meeting was held with clergy of GPC, Main Line Reform Temple and Bethel AME Church meet with representatives of local family trusts to explore a community study that would help identify the need, scope of need and possible impediments, so that we can more fully address food insecurity in our community.
The support from the GPC community has been amazing as we have attempted to join together with others to provide food to those without. Continue with that support as we begin our next steps to address the issue.