Summer program offers free meals for kids

WILLIAMSTOWN, Pa. (WHTM) — In its sixth year, the Bee Happy Kids Cafe as about to be buzzing with activity.

“Last year, we had 135 kids,” Cindy Bixler said. “We expect to have that many or more this summer.”

Bixler is referring to the successful program she helps organize, providing free meals to children in and around her section of northern Dauphin County, including the communities of Lykens, Tower City, Williamstown and Wiconisco.

“We identified that there was a problem, a hunger problem in our area,” Bixler said. “We did a lot of research. We broke down the demographics, and we figured that a childhood program over the summer was a first way to go.”

This Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Tower City Pool, residents can take part in a kick-off party and registration for the free program. After that, children will gather every Wednesday at the Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church in Williamstown.

New this year, participating children will be able to assist in the preparation of their own lunch and enjoy music and fellowship. Children will be provided with a free backpack, which will be filled with food weekly.

“This is what we’re here for, to help the people in our community,” Bixler said. “I myself had tough times raising children. I know what it is. I know what it is to be working poor, and there’s no shame involved in it. Bring the children in, get what you need, have a good time, socialize. That’s what we’re here for.”

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