KINSTON, N.C. — A summer feeding program reminiscent of pre-pandemic days – when Lenoir County Public Schools plated more than 30,000 free meals for youth in the county – will begin operation in June.

Breakfast and lunch for children and teens 18 and younger will be provided Monday through Thursday in cafeterias at South Lenoir, North Lenoir and Kinston high schools beginning June 26. The program begins at all other sites – Southwood Elementary, Contentnea-Savannah K-8, Northwest Elementary and EB Frink, Rochelle and Woodington middle schools – on July 3.

All sites will be closed on July 4. Breakfast hours are 7:40-8:10 a.m. and lunch hours are 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. All meals are to be consumed on-site.

In addition to individuals who come to feeding sites in their neighborhood, the program is also open to students enrolled in the district’s summer learning camps and to young people attending summer camps offered by non-profits like Boys & Girls Club and Salvation Army, as well as the Kinston-Lenoir County Recreation Department.

Summer camps that wish to participate should contact Monica Willis of the LCPS Child Nutrition Department via email at about times and locations.

“The Summer Feeding Program is not only a way to feed our students when they are in camps, but also a community outreach program in that we have been able to reach different agencies, students who walk and churches that have programs,” LCPS Child Nutrition Director Danelle Smith said.

This summer marks the first time that Child Nutrition has offered a full-scale summer feeding program since 2019.

When schools closed in March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, LCPS mounted a free meal distribution program that, through drive-through locations and school bus delivery, put more than three-quarters of a million meals in the hands of Lenoir County families by the time the great majority of students returned to school for in-person instruction in January 2021.

The summer program is offered through the Federal School Nutrition Program. All meals met federal nutrition guidelines and, under federal rules, are provided for free to anyone 18 years old and younger.