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Here are Places That Will Provide Food to Families in Need While Schools are Closed

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The following article was originally published March 16, 2020, and republished through a collaboration with LAist and KPCC.

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Story by Carla Javier

The L.A. Unified School District will open resource centers this week that will serve meals to kids and also open grab-and-go sites. | Benjamin Brayfield/KPCC
The L.A. Unified School District will open resource centers this week that will serve meals to kids and also open grab-and-go sites. | Benjamin Brayfield/KPCC

UPDATE, 5:30 p.m., March 16This story has been updated to reflect the LAUSD decision to cancel plans for family resource centers.

UPDATE, 4:15 p.m., March 17This story has been updated to add other Los Angeles County school districts and community centers in Los Angeles that are also providing meals to children.

Schools around Los Angeles and Orange counties have closed in an effort to prevent further spread of coronavirus.

As LAUSD officials pointed out, that wasn't an easy decision, because many families depend on schools for meals, child care, and services for students with special needs.

"Our schools provide a social safety net for children," schools Supt. Austin Beutner said at a Friday press conference. "The closing of any school has real consequences beyond the loss of instructional time."

We are compiling this list of resources for families who may need help, and we will update as we hear more. In many cases, particularly when it comes to school districts, meals will only be given to individuals 18 or younger who are there in person.

If you have a resource you'd like to bring to our attention, you can email me at cjavier@scpr.org.

LAUSD GRAB-AND-GO MEALS

The district had planned to offer meals at family resource centers, but cancelled those plans late Monday afternoon after health authorities said they could not guarantee that it would be "safe and appropriate to do so," Beutner said in a statement.

The district will continue with its plan to open 60 grab-and-go meal locations — an increase from the 20 originally planned. Those centers will open on Wednesday. They're mapped here:

OTHER LOS ANGELES COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND COMMUNITY CENTERS

In addition, other school districts throughout Los Angeles County and some community centers will be providing meals for kids up to age 18. You can find those in the map below, which will be updated. The times and details vary location by location.

This is an evolving situation, and places may change their plans along the way, so be sure to check websites or call for the most up-to-date information.

LONG BEACH UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

The state's third-largest school district said it will offer free breakfast and lunch to kids, no matter where they go to school, at nearly all of LBUSD's campuses for the first week of the closure.

"The school district will then evaluate its meal services and revise as necessary the schedule and operating locations for all future weeks of the school closure period," the district wrote on March 13.

Where can I get more info? Times and locations are available in the March 13 letter; check the district's COVID-19 resource page for updates.

We are working to confirm other resources for Southern California students and their families. Check back for updates.

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