KENSINGTON, PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Sometimes a quality meal is hard to come by for children in Philadelphia, so one woman stepped in to help.
Since Fox 29 shared Monica Wright’s struggle to meet government funding qualifications for an afterschool meals program, she says generous souls have kept more than her kids going. but she keeps hitting brick walls.
"I was able to link up with other people in other neighborhoods that were going through the same things and actually share a lot of the donations that we got,” Monica told Fox 29.
Miss Monica’s Place has been an afterschool safe haven for these children—of mostly poor working parents—dodging the dangers along the mean streets near the 3100 block of Reach Street in Kensington.
Some children simply need a place where they can get a snack, learn something new and just be a kid, if only for an hour or so.
One might wonder how much longer Monica can sustain her afterschool program off donations alone. She hoped at least until her appeal for a small amount of funding might be granted.
Monica technically falls outside the strict guidelines for the afterschool meals program, and she knows it, but she had hoped for an exception in the country’s poorest big city.
Even if Monica does get approval and renewal for the summer meals program, there’s no guarantee it’s going to be funded.
The program that offers one daily meal to 1.6 million kids may be dropped from the new federal budget plan.
When asked if it feels like she’s fighting a losing battle, Monica nodded. She fights off tears thinking about the possibility of shutting down.
“The parents around her are super supportive,” Monica said. But do they have the money? “No, nobody has the money.”
The little ones offer to sell their creations to help.
So what now to keep it going?
"Now, we've gotta fend for ourselves,” Monica said.
Anyone interested in reaching out or donating to Monica Wright's afterschool meal program efforts should refer to the contact information below:
- Phone: (267)242-6304
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org