This is a guest post from Susan Kochinskas, a volunteer with the Putney Foodshelf. We asked her to provide more info on the Putney Foodshelf Family Food Bag Program, which is modeled after the Vermont Foodbank BackPack Program.

The Putney Foodshelf has been running  Family Food Bag program for the past two years quite successfully. We did not qualify for the Vermont Foodbank’s BackPack Program because they are grant-based and are limited to the number of schools they can do. They currently serve two schools in Brattleboro (Green Street and Oak Grove). They typically go into schools with high free- or reduced-price lunch numbers (Putney is at about 52% — the Vermont Foodbank is serving schools at 85%).

[Editor’s Note: The Vermont Foodbank BackPack Program currently serves more than 1,000 students at 24 schools. Learn more here.]

From the Vermont Foodbank website:

“Bags of kid-friendly, non-perishable, vitamin-fortified food from all five food groups are packed at the Vermont Foodbank and then distributed to participating schools. Guidance counselors, along with school nurses and other staff, will determine those students they deem most in need and send permission slips home to their parents explaining the program. To reduce any stigma, packs of food are placed into the backpacks of those children participating in the program while the students are not in the classroom.

“The packs co