On April 22, 2016, a bilingual (English/Spanish) questionnaire was sent home to the parents of all children participating in Backpack Buddies of Hilton Head. The purpose of this six-question survey was to gather feedback on the desirability of the food items included in the backpack and whether they address the child’s hunger. Two questions also asked whether the supplemental food impacts their child’s school attendance and/or academic performance. An open-ended question also gave parents an opportunity to voice their comments or suggestions.
Over 50 parents responded to the survey. The majority indicated that the supplemental food provided by Backpack Buddies addresses their child’s hunger. They also responded that the food helps in their child’s school attendance and helps their child do better at school. The open-ended question provided feedback on the menu options and included heartfelt expressions of thanks to Backpack Buddies. A follow-up parent survey is planned for the Fall of 2016.
Missing meals and experiencing hunger impair children’s development and achievement. Studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Pediatrics, and the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry document the negative effects of hunger on children’s academic performance and behavior in school. Hungry children have lower math scores. They are also are more likely to repeat a grade, come to school late, or miss it entirely. Click here to continue reading this article.
Proper nutrition is essential to children’s health, yet our society struggles with the paradox of children being overfed and undernourished. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2012 more than one-third of children and adolescents aged 6 to 19 were considered overweight or obese. Click here to continue reading this article.