Littleton school nutrition director prepares to share program success with members of Congress

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LITTLETON, Colo. (KDVR) — Hunger is still a big issue many in America are dealing with in the pandemic.

Feeding America estimates that 50 million may be facing food insecurity now. That’s one in three people here in Colorado.

One school nutritionist is hoping lawmakers in Congress will follow steps taken here on the Front Range to help families.

Like many staff members working in education, the pandemic has been a busy time for Littleton Public Schools’ Director of Nutrition Services and Print Shop, Jessica Gould.

“We’ve really changed all the different ways that we’re getting our meals to kids. Right now, we are outside, and we actually have meals for our fully online student,” said Gould.

That’s right, students that aren’t in the classroom due to the pandemic are eligible to get meals too.

“We are providing healthy meals for all students. We have been able to, with waivers granted from the USDA, give no-cost meals to all of our students in Littleton,” Gould said. 

It’s something the district started doing last March, knowing that families who found themselves on hard times would need help too.

“We are just an easy constant. They don’t have to worry about meals. We’ve got their back. Come to us and we’ll get you fed,” said Gould.

More than 100,000 meals in Littleton have been distributed. Now Gould will virtually testify on a panel before members of Congress, looking to duplicate Littleton’s success across the nation.

“I think nationally would have the biggest impact. Families that may have these challenges in Colorado, there are families in every state. So, we know it’s going to be impactful all across the country, but we are also having them here. We want to make sure that regardless of what’s going on, that child is being set up for success to learn,” said Gould. 

If you are outside of Littleton but still need food assistance, contact your school district to see if they have a nutritionist or similar program that can help.

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