The Backpack Buddies Program distributes food to children at risk of going hungry over the weekends, holidays and school breaks when food provided by schools isn’t available. The $10,000 grant from AAWGT for the 2020-21 school year came at a critical time and really made a difference for the children and families we serve. Because schools were not in session due to COVID-19, food had to be delivered directly to families. In-kind food donations and fundraising activities to support the program were also disrupted. The AAWGT funds made it possible for us to deliver 1,343 backpacks over 10 months and 25 holiday meal bags to 106 children from three Title 1 elementary schools - Belle Grove, Eastport and Hilltop. Reallocating other program funds, we were also able to provide vegetables, fresh fruit and $25 food gift cards with each monthly backpack. A surprising number of children in AAC face the insecurity of not having enough food to eat - nearly 1 in 5 children in some areas. Inadequate nutrition affects a child’s physical and mental health and contributes to poor academic performance.