CITRUS COUNTY, Fla. - The coronavirus pandemic has left many without a job and also leaving some families having to worry where their next meal will come from.

What You Need To Know

The Citrus County School District is helping kids worry less about food so that they can focus on their school work.

Ralph Blow and Alexis Lawrence are Citrus Count residents. Blow told Spectrum Bay News 9, “Virtual school, you know, we had to pretty much triple our food budget with the breakfast and lunches all the time and it was tough for us financially just to do that.”

It’s because of Citrus County students and families like the Blow’s and Lawrence’s that the school district decided to extend their food service program through the end of the year, Director of Food and Nutrition Services, Roy Pistone added. 

“We have 70 percent of our kids are economically needy, so the need for food especially this time is critical," Pistone said.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner and snack for the entire weekend - a family does not have to worry where their next meal is coming from.

Citrus County parent Kelly Regan said, “It’s wonderful that they have the opportunity right now to offer this program for the children and not have to worry about the extra expenses of food.”

“At this particular site, right here at Citrus High School,” Pistone said, “we serve about 180 meals a day. In addition to that we get a lot of help from our local community - both our education foundation members as well as our transportation department - so this is truly a community effort to help feed our children.”

“We pray every night before meals and thank God for it,” Blow said before driving away. 

The Citrus County school district serves over 6,500 lunches a day and 3,500 breakfasts a day. Parents pick up food at one of 18 locations twice a week to feed their kids seven days a week.