ITR Concession Company, the operator of the Indiana Toll Road, is establishing the Indiana Toll Road – School Food Relief Fund, a $100,000 grant to help offset the costs of school backpack food programs.
In Indiana, over 47% of students receive their meals for free or at a reduced price through the National School Lunch Program. Food scarcity does not end with the school week, and many schools engage in a weekend food distribution, commonly referred to as “Backpack & Snacks” programs. This Food Relief Fund will directly support those students who may be going without food on weekends during the COVID-19 crisis.
Each chosen district or organization will receive between $1,000 and $5,000, determined by the number of applications as well as an assessment of needs. The grants will be used to help fund either an existing Backpack & Snacks program, or as seed money to begin such a program. IDOE public school districts, nonpublic school districts, or charter management organizations within Lake, Porter, LaPorte, St. Joseph, Elkhart, LaGrange, and Steuben counties are eligible, and their superintendents will receive an application via email, with chosen programs to be announced on April 27, 2020.
In addition, ITRCC has been committed to supporting each of its employees throughout the COVID-19 crisis. With no layoffs or furloughs, ITRCC staff have been able to continue to support their families and focus on their personal and community wellbeing.
ITRCC CEO Nic Barr recognizes that the areas surrounding the Toll Road corridor remain heavily affected by this crisis. “We’re continually looking to make a positive impact in our community, and the Indiana Toll Road – School Relief Fund is designed to assist those in need, and to support our valued community partners and neighbors,” Barr said.