It’s Go Time for Summer Feeding

Accompanied by Roanoke City Mayor Sherman Lea (center left), First Lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe (center right) cuts the ribbon on Cafe to Grow. From left are Lilly Cuevas, Boys & Girls Club Member; Michelle Dykstra, Roanoke City Council; Rob Ward, Food Lion; Katie Fletcher, Norfolk Southern; Mayor Lea; Tony Nunley, Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated; Mrs. McAuliffe; Greg Habeeb, VA delegate; Anita Price, Roanoke City Vice Mayor, John Edwards, VA Senator; Pamela Irvine, FASWVA President and CEO.

It’s Go Time for Summer Feeding

Spontaneous cheers of “when I say taco, you say nacho — TACO! NACHO!” rose from a crowd of children as they waited in line for meals at a very special foodie truck.

Feeding America Southwest Virginia hosts Summer Food Service Program sites throughout our service region. These sites help feed kids when they don’t have access to free and reduced-price school lunch programs.

This year with lead gifts from Food Lion Feeds and Norfolk Southern, and supporters like you, we’re taking summer feeding on the road with a brand new foodie truck for children – the Cafe to Grow.

Cafe to Grow will make three stops in Roanoke City during its inaugural summer run and is projected to serve 200 children per day, 5 days a week. That’s 10,000 meals served over the course of the summer!

In May, Cafe to Grow made its grand debut at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest Virginia. First Lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe spoke passionately about fighting child hunger, then cut the ribbon and helped serve the first meals.

Volunteers from Food Lion Feeds did the meal prep and helped distribute tacos, nacho salads and good cheer with their mascot Leo the Lion.

Guests were then treated to a taco-bar style sampling of the food being served to the children.

Cafe to Grow is just the latest innovation in FASWVA’s long history of making sure children have access to healthy food the whole year round.

The food bank began participating in the USDA’s Summer Food Service Program in 2005 and regularly supports more than 30 summer feeding sites throughout Southwest Virginia.

This means not only providing the food those sites serve to hungry children, but also performing site inspections, keeping records and answering questions for site coordinators and families in need.

“Feeding children is one of the most important things we do,” says FASWVA President and CEO Pamela Irvine. “We regularly hear from teachers and parents about the health and behavioral challenges that stem from a lack of proper nutrition. Children need consistent access to healthy food to grow, learn, play, and just be kids. That’s why providing meals to children remains a top priority for us.”

As with all of FASWVA’s programs and services, YOU make it happen.

And we need YOU to continue to feed children in our region. Give today to support our feeding programs at