Each Friday during the school year, Freestore Foodbank sends packs of food, known as Power Packs, home with students to ensure they have something to eat on weekends. Each Power Pack contains over a dozen food items, which are shelf-stable and kid-friendly.

We think it’s important to provide children with food that is easy to prepare. A few examples of what you might find in a Power Pack include whole grain cereals, fruit and vegetable juices, sunflower seeds, oatmeal bars, complete pasta meals and other healthy options.

Addressing a Vital Need
More than 60,000 children living in the 20 counties served by Freestore Foodbank are food insecure, meaning they aren’t always sure where they will get their next meal.

Research shows that hungry children are more likely to be absent from school [i], lack focus and energy [i], and be vulnerable to illness [ii].

Nourishing Bodies and Minds
That’s why Power Packs are such a vital part of the work Freestore Foodbank does in the community. Over 5,000 children in more than 108 participating schools receive Power Packs from Freestore Foodbank each week. The children are primarily between the ages of six and 12 and live in Hamilton, Clermont, Clinton, Pike, Scioto, Adams, Brown, and Highland counties in Ohio and Campbell, Kenton, Boone, Bracken, Gallatin, Pendleton, Owen and Grant counties in Northern Kentucky.

Get Involved in the Fight Against Childhood Hunger
You can help children receive the proper nutrition they need to succeed in life. Make a donation to the Power Pack program: $5 will help feed a child for a weekend; $200 provides one student with Power Packs for the entire school year; $8,000 provides Power Pack to one school for a year. If you are interested in sponsoring an existing school partner site, please email Libby Coletta at donors@freestorefoodbank.org.

Volunteers can assist with assembling Power Packs at Our Community Resource and Distribution Center at 3401 Rosenthal Way, Cincinnati, Oh 45204. Opportunities are available throughout the school year.

The Bigger Picture
The Power Pack program is part of a larger national effort by Feeding America, with more than 150 member food banks distributing weekend packages across the country. This program has provided nutrition and hope to more than a quarter of a million American children annually for the last 16 years.

Becoming a Power Pack Site
Applications are open October/November in consideration for new sites to join the Power Pack program for the coming school year. Power Pack sites are currently confirmed, however school principals are invited to submit an application that we will keep on file should additional resources be available. For more information about Freestore Foodbank’s Power Pack program or if interested in being added to our mailing list, please email Heidi Becker or call (513) 482-7294.

[i] Murphy, Wehler, Pagano, Little, Kleinman and Jellinek (1998) Relationship Between Hunger and Psychosocial Functioning in Low-Income American Children. Journal of American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 37 (2), 163-170. [ii] Kirkpatrick, McIntyre, and Potestio (2010) Child hunger and long-term adverse consequences for health. Archive of Pediatric Adolescent Medicine, 164 (8), 754-762.