About the Golden Backpack Program
Currently there are over 1,200 students in Golden who are enrolled in the free and/or reduced lunch program at their school during the school year. For many of these students, these lunches serve as their main source of nourishment throughout the week. Weekends are often a painful time with little or no nourishment available.
The Golden Backpack Program (GBP) helps feed students in need by providing a sack full of enough food to feed a child for the entire weekend so that when they return to school each Monday, they arrive ready to learn because they had food over the weekend. Currently, the GBP provides about 5,000 meals/month assistance to students in nine local schools, including Mitchell Elementary, Shelton Elementary, Welchester Elementary, Kyffin Elementary, Free Horizon Montessori, Compass Montessori, Connections Learning Center, Bell Middle School and Golden High School.
Peggy Halderman of the Golden Rotary Club started the program in 2008. What started as a small program feeding 65 students has grown into a community effort involving partnerships with the Food Bank of the Rockies, the Rotary Club of Golden, the Golden Rotary Foundation, the New Hope Community Church out of which the program operates, and the entire Golden community.