If You Give a Teen a Snack…

Inspired by the contemporary children’s classic, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie,” Cheyanna Johnson, Child Hunger Corps Fellow, explores what happens when teenagers have regular access to snacks and meals.

If you give a teen a snack, feelings of hanger and stomach pains go away for a little while.
When those feelings go away, a teen stays in class instead of the nurse or principal’s office.
When a teen stays in class, they don’t fall behind their peers.
When a teen doesn’t feel left behind, school is a lot more fun.
When a teen enjoys school, their attendance improves.

If you give a teen a meal, they won’t focus on their hunger anymore.
When a teen isn’t focused on hunger, they will be focused and attentive in class.
When a teen is focused and attentive in class, they are prepared to learn.
When a teen is prepared to learn, their grades improve.
When a teen has good grades, their opportunities increase.

If you give a teen access to food, they can feed their family.
When a teen can feed their family, they don’t have to endanger themselves for money.
When a teen doesn’t prioritize money over safety, they can prioritize school over work.
When a teen can go to school instead of taking risks, they don’t create a permanent record.
When a teen doesn’t compromise their future, they live.​

Teens are far more responsible for their families than many realize and are often burdened with adulthood too soon. Recognizing this obstacle is important to creating a support system to show that their community is invested in their future.

If you give a teen support, they will multiply your investment tenfold.

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