Twitter users in Baltimore may have noticed a new top trending topic today, #HearTheCrunch.  Throughout Maryland and D.C. this morning, students, teachers, advocates, elected officials and many others joined Maryland Hunger Solutions and D.C. Hungers Solutions to crunch an apple in support of healthy school breakfast for students. Ensuring that kids have access to a healthy morning meal is critical in the fight against childhood hunger.
This year marked Maryland Hunger Solutions’ third annual Hear the Crunch event, and nearly one million Marylanders, including students in every public school district, participated in a simultaneous apple crunch. According to FRAC’s recent report on school breakfast participation, Maryland ranks 4th in the nation for school breakfast participation. Hear The Crunch in Maryland aims to raise awareness about breakfast, and the programs that make it successful in the state –the Maryland Meals for Achievement Act, the inclusion of alternative serving models, such as breakfast in the classroom and breakfast after the bell, and the Community Eligibility Provision.
D.C. Hunger Solutions held its first Hear the Crunch event today to raise awareness about the opportunities D.C. students have to participate in school breakfast. The District ranks third in the nation for breakfast participation due to the widespread adoption of Community Eligibility, which allows high-poverty schools to offer free meals, and the continued positive impact of the D.C. Healthy Schools Act which requires high-poverty schools to offer breakfast in the classroom or other alternative serving methods.
The region heard the crunch today! From western Maryland to the Eastern Shore; from Baltimore to every corner of the District of Columbia, participants crunched apples together to ensure that the School Breakfast Program reaches all children at risk for experiencing hunger and helps them get the nutrition they need to start each school day ready to learn.
Both Maryland Hunger Solutions and D.C. Hunger Solutions are initiatives of the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC).