Family BackPack Program

When children leave school for the weekend or holidays, the last thing they should worry about is having enough to eat. The Family BackPack Program ensures that children and families at risk of hunger have nutritious food at home when school-based resources are not available.

The Food Bank originally launched the BackPack Program in 2006. Today, thousands of families benefit from the Program at 14 school sites directly funded by the Food Bank and its donors, as well as at 13 Community-Sponsored BackPack school sites.

Family BackPacks provided by the Food Bank contain items such as oatmeal, peanut butter, macaroni and cheese, pasta and pasta sauce, beans, rice, canned meats and more, and provide the foundation for 13 family-sized meals. Read more about what we accomplished last year with the Family BackPack Program.

Food Bank Family BackPack locations:

Albemarle County—Mary Carr Greer Elementary School
Augusta County—Craigsville Elementary School
Campbell County—Altavista Elementary School and Brookneal Elementary School
Fluvanna County—Central Elementary School
Loudoun County—Guilford Elementary School and Sugarland Elementary School
Lynchburg City—Dearington Elementary School, William M. Bass Elementary School
Pittsylvania County—Hurt Elementary School
Waynesboro City—Wenonah Elementary School and William Perry Elementary School
Winchester City—Garland R. Quarles Elementary School and VA Ave. Charlotte Dehart Elementary School

Community-Sponsored BackPack Partners

Through Community-Sponsored BackPack partnerships, local organizations and groups work with the Food Bank to provide shelf-stable food to children and their families. These partners help us reach students in schools where there is a demonstrated need for additional food.

Community-Sponsored BackPack partners take advantage of the Food Bank’s volume discount to obtain food and agree to meet menu requirements to ensure children receive healthy nutrition.  However, because these programs are run locally and funded by the partners, our partners often tailor their program to best meet their community’s specific needs.

To learn more about becoming a Community-Sponsored BackPack site, contact Eileen Emerson at

Community-Sponsored BackPack Program partners and locations:

Partner: Amherst Cares
Locations: Amherst County

Partner: Backpack Buddies
Locations: Warren County — E. Wilson Morrison Elementary School

Partner: Bright Futures
Locations: Frederick County and Winchester City

Partner: Duncan Memorial United Methodist Church
Locations: Clarke County

Partner: James Madison University’s Gus Bus
Locations: Neighborhoods throughout Harrisonburg

Partner: Legacy Church
Locations: Greene County — William Monroe Middle SchoolRuckersville Elementary SchoolGreene Elementary SchoolGreene Primary School

Partner: Loudoun BackPack Coalition (Loudoun Educational Foundation)
Locations: Schools throughout Loudoun County

Partner: Park View/Food for Thought
Locations: Amherst County HeadStart and Lynchburg City

Partner: St. Peter’s Lutheran
Location: Augusta County — Churchville Elementary School

Also, we partner with the PB&J Fund on their Holiday Giving Program, through which 900 children in Charlottesville and Albemarle County receive food support during the holidays.

We thank these Program Donors (FY20)

The Abbott Fund
An Anonymous Donor
Augusta Health
Community Action Partnership of Augusta, Staunton, and Waynesboro (CAPSAW)
Community Foundation of the Central Blue Ridge
CR England
Food Lion Feeds
Kraft Heinz Company Foundation
NTELOS Wireless Fund
Red Nose Fund
Sheetz Family Charities
Woodforest Charitable Foundation