Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County has documented a dramatic increase in food insecurity for children across the area. As a result, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County is tackling the increased demand by immediately expanding its free food programs to include breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks seven days a week to all children under the age of 18.
More than 30,000 free meals are now provided weekly across Palm Beach County in cooperation with the Juvenile Transition Center.
Each weekday, the free meals are picked up by parents with a drive-thru style distribution system at seven individual clubs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Friday, at five club sites around the county, the free meals are also distributed for the entire weekend.
“At the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County, we do whatever it takes to take care of our club members, and in this case, all children in need throughout Palm Beach County. We’re on the front lines, and our staff has witnessed the dramatic increase of hunger in our community as the COVID-19 crisis continues. By expanding our free food programs to include all meals and all children, we are providing a vital service in the communities that need us the most,” said Jaene Miranda, CEO and president of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. “We are expecting that our numbers will continue to rise as time passes.”
The nonprofit initially started the free lunch and snack program to help club members during the COVID-19 club closures. After seeing the demand increase in the community, the free meal program was expanded to all meals for all children.
Club locations offering seven days a week breakfast, lunch dinner and snack from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. are:
The Belle Glade Teen Center, 350 S.W. 10th Street, Belle Glade
The Delray Beach Club, 1451 S.W. 7th Street, Delray Beach
The Florence De George Club, 4105 Pinewood Avenue, West Palm Beach
The Marjorie S. Fisher Club, 905 Drexel Road, West Palm Beach
The Max M. Fisher Club, 221 W. 13th Street, Riviera Beach
Club locations offering five days a week breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. are:
The Boca Raton Club, 300 Newcastle Street, Boca Raton
The Neil S. Hirsch Boys & Girls Club, 1080 Wellington Trace, Wellington
In a separate food program called Farm to Family, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County has partnered with Fresh RX Kids to provide a week’s worth of meals to entire club families. Unlike the above free meals program, Farm to Family is only available to families with children registered as members of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County.
Weekly, Farm to Family provides 4,000 club family members fresh, healthy produce, can goods, dry goods, protein and other items generously donated to the clubs. The program keeps club families healthy while also keeping local farmers afloat while their traditional markets have closed due to COVID-19.