Mobile food truck to offer students lunches during winter break

The River Food Pantry's MUNCH program serves kids
Mobile food truck to offer students lunches during winter break

As Madison children get ready for about two weeks off for winter break, an area food pantry is preparing to bring lunches to several northside neighborhoods on days school is out.

The River Food Pantry’s MUNCH mobile food truck will deliver about 400 meals daily to the eight locations in scheduled 15-minute timeslots. The program offers lunches to children and teens every day school is out, including weekends and days students are on break, except for Christmas next week.

MUNCH program coordinator Joey Dunscombe will be among those putting together the lunches, which include things like sandwiches, fruit snacks and juice boxes. That’s the production side, but he said his favorite part is delivery.

“I’m making friends with these kids. They’re good people,” Dunscombe said. “Just to see that it does affect them. They need it. They’re there because they want to eat that food. It’s rewarding. I like it a lot.”

He said making sure children have regular meals during break will help when they return to school.

“Kids need to eat. If they’re going to school after a long weekend or break without maybe having proper nutrition, then it’s going to make their brains have to work extra hard to be able to learn stuff,” Dunscombe said. “If your stomach is empty, that’s what you’re thinking about, right? You’re thinking about, ‘When can I get a meal? When can I get this?’ You’re not thinking about, ‘OK I have to focus on math,’ or ‘I’m going to sit and read.'”

Dunscombe said while they currently only service northside locations, he’d love to expand, but that would take more donations and volunteers. He encourages anyone to sign up to volunteer on The River Food Pantry’s website, which you can find here.

A schedule with the truck’s scheduled time slots can be found here.

Get your weather forecast from people who actually live in your community. We update with short, easy-to-use video forecasts you can watch on your phone every day. Download the iOS or Android app here.