PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Following Governor Kate Brown’s late-night announcement that all K-12 schools in the state will be closed for more than two weeks, starting March 16, local businesses began to step up, ready to help with the strain that some families may be feeling in the coming weeks.
The state’s public schools, from kindergarten through high school, will be shuttered from March 16 to March 31. Brown’s office said in a statement the decision was made after considering “staffing challenges and health concerns due to the public health threat of coronavirus.”
In an effort to help food-insecure students who depend on meals at school, Laughing Planet Cafe said that their restaurants will be offering free kid’s meals to any child who qualifies for Meal Assistance Programs. The Portland-based company made the announcement on Facebook Friday afternoon.
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Lionheart Coffee, a Beaverton-based coffee company, announced via Instagram Friday that they will be offering brown bag lunches to anyone who needs one, starting on Monday, March 16.
Following the governor’s school closure announcement, Oregon City’s Pita Pit offered a similar helping hand to its community. The local franchise is offering kids who would normally be on their school’s food assistance programs free lunches at Pita Pit—up to four per week.
“As long as we are open, we are willing to help,” the business said in a Facebook post shortly after 11:30 p.m. Thursday.
According to a Pita Pit spokesperson, this food assistance only applies to the Oregon City location.