The Tupelo/Lee County Hunger Coalition is a joint effort of the CREATE Foundation’s Lee County affiliate, United Way of Northeast Mississippi, and Families First for Mississippi. The coalition has 3 priorities:
- to secure funding and resources for food pantries in Lee County
- to support and expand hot meals and school weekend backpack programs in Lee County
- to raise awareness about food insecurity in the area
In 2017, United Way hired Jason Martin as the director of the hunger coalition, thanks to a grant from the CREATE Foundation’s Marchbanks fund. Jason is working with the local food pantries, hot meals programs like Saints Brew, the Salvation Army, and Meals on Wheels, and school programs that provide weekend backpacks and in-school food pantries for students in need.
Recently, Jason coordinated the first-ever Summer Backpack Program, which provided almost 700 students in Lee County with weekly boxes of food over the summer when free lunches and breakfasts and weekend backpacks are not available.
Hunger Coalition in the News