A Summer Food Service Program provided by the Harrisburg School District is one of four finalists for the Governor's Hometown Cup Award, which involves the best projects in each of the four population divisions across the state.
Program coordinator Valerie Hodges says they served over 12,000 meals to Harrisburg and surrounding communities last summer. She says the need is growing all the time.
"With the mines closing, that was 250 jobs, that were just cut. That impacts 250 families straight off the top. Not even to mention the trickle down effect is has to the other businesses."
Hodges says the Summer Food Service Program is bridging a gap because not only does it serve school-age children for free, it also offers meals to adults for a small fee -- and for those who can't afford to pay -- donations help pick up the tab.
She says similar programs have now started in Eldorado and Carrier Mills.
The Governor's Hometown Cup Award winner will be announced Thursday afternoon in Springfield.