Fifty-seven percent of young Portlanders qualify for free or reduced-price lunch during the school year. Without school lunches, summer becomes the time when nearly 50,000 Portland children face hunger daily.
Portland Parks & Recreation’s Free Lunch + Play program supports families by offering nutritious meals and recreational activities during the summer recess.
Working alongside Comcast -- the presenting sponsor of Summer Free For All, plus other valued sponsors, community partners, Portland Public Schools, and David Douglas and Centennial School Districts -- Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) coordinates the Free Lunch + Play program to ensure that it meets the changing needs in our community.
Join Portland Parks & Recreation and Portland Parks Commissioner Amanda Fritz for the Summer Free For All Field Day Celebration Kickoff on Monday, July 10, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at Mt. Scott Park (SE 72nd Ave. and Harold St).
Highlights include trivia games and giveaways hosted by Comcast volunteers, free lunch, live music, a kids’ open mic and talent show, and giant check presentations from sponsors.
“Comcast is very pleased to be back for our second year as the presenting sponsor of the Summer Free for All program”, said Marc Farrar, Vice President of External Affairs for Comcast Oregon/SW Washington. “It’s so great to share these free evening concerts and movies with our family, friends and neighbors, making memories across Portland.”
“Our ongoing commitment to the Summer Free For All program is important to us since it’s addressing the basic needs of local kids and families,” said Monique Barton, Bank of America’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility. “Coming together as a community to fight hunger and effectively address summer food insecurity among school-age children is a very worthy cause, and one we are proud to be a part of.”
Free Lunch + Play programs are offered from June 20 to August 25, 2017, Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.
Free lunch is offered at all Free Lunch + Play sites, plus sports, games, and arts and crafts.
“More than half of Portland’s school children qualify for free or reduced priced lunches,” notes Portland Parks Commissioner Fritz. “And the Summer Free For All makes a real impact on families. Thanks to our partners, PP&R will serve more than 110,000 lunches at various sites this summer. Our sponsors’ commitment to the Summer Free For All shows their passion for making our community better and helps deliver dozens of free outdoor movies, concerts, and playground lunch programs to Portlanders.”
PP&R and its partners are constantly innovating. Their Mobile Playgrounds program brings free lunch and recreation to children at apartment complexes in neighborhoods where parks and playgrounds don’t exist.
And in 2017, for the first time, Mobile Playgrounds programs offer free lunches, in addition to games and fun.
To better serve Portland’s diverse community, PP&R again offers the Summer Free For All schedule in nine different languages: Arabic, Burmese, English, simplified Chinese, Nepalese, Russian, Spanish, Somalian and Vietnamese.
“Our mission is ‘Healthy Parks, Healthy Portland’,” says Portland Parks & Recreation Director Mike Abbaté. “The Summer Free For All is a wonderful way many people first engage with Portland Parks & Recreation programs. Partners like Comcast, Bank of America, the Portland Parks Foundation and local school districts help make these connections possible by continuing to invest in Summer Free For All. This support leads to a lifetime of healthier, happier people of all ages, as well as a united community.”
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