Mesa County Mobile Summer Food Program
Feeding Hungry Kids...One Neighborhood at a Time
In 2015, Western Colorado Community Foundation (WCCF) identified child hunger in western Colorado as a critical issue that impacts hundreds of children and their ability to learn. Working with Mesa County Valley School District 51 Food and Nutrition Services (D51), WCCF identified a gap in summer food programs due to loss of grant funding and other financial challenges. Schools that had previously been open for summer school and meals were no longer operating during summer break. Children who qualified for free and reduced lunch (higher than 90 percent at some schools), had no option for summer meals, facing weeks without a steady, nutritious meal.
In response to this gap in services for children, WCCF began partnering with D51 in 2015 by piloting a mobile meals program that would take nutritious meals to children, in the communities where they live and play. Over 40 percent of families who participated in one survey about summer meals stated that meal sites were typically challenging for them to get to, either due to work obligations or lack of reliable transportation. Mobile meals remove such barriers, bringing food directly to children. This is made possible through the USDA's Summer Food Service Program which began supporting mobile food trucks in 1999.
In 2015, WCCF provided D51 with a grant of $58,000 to purchase "Lunch Lizard 1.0". During the pilot summer, one food truck delivered meals to five locations in Grand Junction and Orchard Mesa four days a week. Over 4,000 meals were served during the seven week pilot.
In 2016, the organizations listed below are principle donors to Lunch Lizard 2.0! Many other partners have supported the program-see below. Over 16,000 meals were served through the Lunch Lizard two food trucks in summer 2016, quadrupling meals served from 2015. In 2017 we have added an additional week, additional stops and a new Palisade route. We hope to exceed 25,000 meals served to the highest need areas of our community in 2017!
May - July Summer Calendar.pdf
June 2017 calendar of activities.pdf
The Lunch Lizard is made possible through support from Western Colorado Community Foundation donors, Rocky Mountain Health Plans, GJ Lion's Club, Alpine Bank, Share our Strength/Arby's Foundation, CMU Business Honors students and Independence Academy students.
Mobile meals delivered by D51's Lunch Lizard food trucks
Mon - Friday
No July 3-5
Orchard Mesa & Downtown Route
675 W Colorado Ave. Playgroud
615 28 1/4 Rd
1:25pm - 1:40pm
1340 Gunnison Ave. Grand Junction
1827 N 26th St
544 28 1/4 Rd
516 31 1/2 Rd
Playground by office
Mon - Friday
3276 F Rd.