Beach Students Fed Through Summer Months Thanks to Community

More than 60 students at Hutchinson Beach Elementary school get backpacks filled with food for the weekend but this summer many of those children have an even greater need for nourishment.

"We have probably 5 to 10 families that have a greater need for food through the summer," said Alicia Bailie, a parent liaison at the school.

The backpack program does not continue through the summer.

"For weeks I was asked what will you do for these kids in the summer. I'd say, ‘all I can do is pray for them."

Then Wednesday, a delivery from the Panama City Rescue Mission, filled with food that was collected at the US Postal Service Food Drive, changed that.

50 boxes of food were delivered to the elementary schools along the beach, filled with essentials like peanut butter and vegetables.

Each box will help feed a family of five for almost a week, and along the beach there are many families who need this.

"It's probably close to 200,” said Rev. Bill Fox with the Panama City Rescue Mission. “It's a tremendous need. If the kids need the backpacks during the weekend, imagine what they'll be like in the summer."

"It warms my heart, the kids are why I do what I do, and the hugs and their faces lighting up when they see it," said Bailie.