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'Urgent need' at Regional Food Bank for Summer Feeding Program volunteers

Hope's Kitchen at the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma cooks 6,000 meals a day for children in the Summer Feeding Program. (KOKH/Jordann Lucero)

There's an urgent need right now for volunteers at the Regional Food Bank.

The bank needs hundreds of volunteers for the Summer Feeding Program. It takes so many people because there are thousands of Oklahoma children who might go hungry without it.

Volunteers are needed every weekday in July, except Independence Day, to make meals. Volunteers use Hope's Kitchen, at the food bank headquarters, to make 6,000 breakfasts and lunches for children.

The meals are taken to more than 100 locations across central and western Oklahoma.

Without school to provide food, the program ensures children don’t go hungry and parents don’t have to make tough choices.

"Their parents are left wondering, 'How am I going to eat? I'm not going to eat so my child can eat'," Angie Doss said. "But that doesn't have to happen."

Doss is the Regional Food Bank’s director of marketing.

In Oklahoma, one in four children doesn’t know where their next meal will come from, Doss said. She said the need is everywhere across the state.

"We have programs, even in Edmond, an affluent area where people think not in my backyard. But it is," Doss said.

To volunteer

People who want to volunteer, can choose either of two shifts a day, 9 a.m. to noon or 1 to 4 p.m. at 3355 S. Purdue in Oklahoma City. Volunteers have to be 12-years-old or older.

You can sign up on the bank's website or by calling 600-3160.

To get a meal

Children 18-years-old or younger are all eligible for free meals through the Summer Feeding Program.

For a list of Summer Feeding sites text the word FOOD to 877877, visit the Summer Feeding Program website or call 405-972-1111.

"The Regional Food Bank without community, without volunteers, without the donors, we wouldn't be able to help our neighbors who otherwise wouldn't have something to eat," Doss said.

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