Pottsville Salvation Army Starting Summer Lunch Program

POTTSVILLE, Pa. -- The Pottsville Salvation Army is starting a summer lunch program.

Last month, the Pottsville Housing Authority announced it couldn't afford it's summer recreation program, which provided free lunch to kids at more than a dozen parks in the city during the summer.

Jim Tokonitz of Pottsville was not surprised to hear about the funding problems.

"Over the last few years, I've definitely noticed like some of the programs got smaller and there wasn't as many anyway," Tokonitz said.

Since the announcement, several agencies in the area have been trying to find a solution. The Salvation Army is teaming up with the United Way and the St. Clair School District to make sure some students in Pottsville get lunches this summer.

"Perhaps many of them depend on their school lunches for a consistent meal during the school year," Pottsville Salvation Army Envoy-in-Charge Brad Harris said. "So what do they do during the summer time?"

Harris said the St. Clair School District will deliver lunches to the O'Hara playground near the Salvation Army Monday through Friday starting on June 18-July 27.

"This is an opportunity where we can make sure they have a balanced meal during the summer months and also so that they can have some good structured activity," Harris said.

The Pottsville Library will also be providing lunches.

Newswatch 16 spoke to the executive director of the Pottsville Housing Authority. He said there will be a meeting held Thursday discuss getting more sites for free lunches.

Tokonitz is considering signing up one of his kids for the Salvation Army's lunch program.

"It's a huge help," Tokonitz said. "Especially when parents are at work and everything. You know what I mean? It's definitely a relief."

To sign up for the Salvation Army's lunch program, you can go to their building in downtown Pottsville or go to their registration event at the O'Hara playground on June 7 from 10 a.m. to noon.

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