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FEEDING THE KIDS: Local organizations and restaurants offer free meals for kids while K-12 schools close due to COVID-19

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When there are mandatory closings statewide for schools—especially for two weeks (effective Monday, March 16), as enacted by Governor Cooper to mitigate the spread of COVID-19—worry arises beyond disseminating a deadly virus. Kids who depend on free breakfast and lunch through New Hanover County’s Community Eligibility Programs certainly will be affected.

To put that in perspective, the following schools offer free meals to all students: Alderman Elementary, Blair Elementary, Bradley Creek Elementary, Career Readiness Academy at Mosley, Castle Hayne Elementary, College Park Elementary, College Road Early Childhood Center (CRECC), Forest Hills Global Elementary, Freeman The International School at Gregory, Holly Shelter, Middle Howe Pre-K Center, JC Roe Center, Johnson Pre-K Center, Lake Forest Academy, Mary C. Williams Elementary, Murrayville Elementary, NHHS Pine Valley Elementary. Rachel Freeman Elementary, SEA TECH, Snipes Academy, Sunset Park Elementary, Trask Middle, WECH Williston Middle, Winter Park Elementary and Wrightsboro Elementary.

Already, local organizations and restaurants are getting ahead of the fallout that families with food insecurities will face in coming weeks. Below is a rundown of places keeping kids fed and healthy during this vulnerable state.

The list will continue to be updated as we receive information from the community at large. Feel free to email to add to it.


601 Greenfield Street
Wilmington, North Carolina 28401
(910) 465-0995

The local nonprofit feeds area school kids through various programs all year long, ensuring kids are fed on weekends, during holiday, spring and summer breaks, and now during the COVID-19 shutdown.

Aside from donating monetarily at, you can also drop off needed items, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Fridays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., or have items shipped to Nourish NC. Right now, they’re mostly in need of: pasta, canned pasta sauce, regular size cereal, peanut butter, jelly, mac and cheese, hearty soups and stews.

Also watch their FB page for volunteer opportunities. Families who need help can call Nourish at 910-458-5299 or contact them online here.


Brigade Boys and Girls Club, 2758 Vance Street
Houston Moore Housing Authority, 1601 S. 13th Street

Starting Monday, March 16, the club will feed families who have children, ages 5-18. They will be able to receive both breakfast and lunch, Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Two locations will be set up including: The Brigade Boys and Girls Club’s Teen Center at 2759 Vance Street, and Houston Moore Housing Authority at 1601 S. 13th Street.


4100 Sunglow Dr.
(910) 338-5258

GLOW Academy will begin distributing free meals to kids under 18 in New Hanover County on March 17 through two meal distribution operations. Curbside pickup will be available 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday, at the GLOW campus. Also, all of GLOW’s school buses will convert into food trucks and deliver breakfast and lunch to six locations across Wilmington: 11 – 11:45 a.m., Greenville Loop Village Trailer Park, Greenville Loop Road, and Vista Village, Manhattan Dr.; 12:15-12:45 p.m., Oak Court Apartments, 245 S Kerr Ave., and Forest Hills Apartments, 505 Alpine Dr.; 1-1:45 p.m., Tidewater Apartments – 355 Greendale Dr., and MLK Center, 401 S. 8th St.

701 N Lake Park Blvd
Carolina Beach, North Carolina 28428
(910) 458-5299

Starting Tuesday, March 17, the Carolina Beach eatery will offer free lunches to any Carolina or Kure beach child in need. Parents can come by during the week between 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. to pick up the food.


109 Pier Master Point
Wilmington, North Carolina 28412
(910) 833-0906

They are offering children out of school one free kids meal a day until further notice.







1611 Pavilion Place
Wilmington, North Carolina 28403
(910) 256-0115

Children who need breakfast or lunch, Monday through Friday, will be offered a free meal.


420 Eastwood Rd
Wilmington, North Carolina 28403
(910) 791-6995

Kids 12 and under will eat free through the month of March with the purchase of an adult entree. Available only Monday through Friday.


2028 Northstar Place
Wilmington, North Carolina 28405
(203) 505-8830

The Leland franchise will offer a free breakfast sandwich to kids.


8 pavilion Avenue South
Carolina Beach, North Carolina
(910) 599-5593

Starting Tuesday, March 17, Buzz’s Roost at the Beach will have free bagged lunches (containing ham and cheese or turkey and cheese sandwich, bag of chips and a cookie) for pickup between noon and 5 p.m. They will be offered Monday through Sunday for as long as New Hanover County Schools are closed. If pickup isn’t an option, please, call for delivery: 704-560-6552.


(910) 508-8808

Irv’s will offer free egg and cheese breakfast sandwiches. Call 910-508-8808 to place orders and let them know where to deliver.


114-A Princess Street
Wilmington, North Carolina
(910) 470-4348

Wake n Bake will offer a free donut to school kids who need breakfast. Call 910-470-4348 to learn more.


1054 S College Rd.
Wilmington, North Carolina
(910) 395-5289

Starting Monday, March 16, for as long as students are out of school, free kids meals will be offered to affected families for breakfasy, lunch and dinner.


7134 Market St.
Wilmington, North Carolina
(910) 821-8191

Stella’s will offer free lunch to all kids who receive free lunch at school. They also will waive all delivery fees and offer curb-side pickup for the foreseeable future.



The following sites will open  11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Meals will be given via drive-through or walk-up only for any child, ages 0-18. Families will tell staff how many meals are needed; they will be provided lunch and the following day’s breakfast.

  • Rachel Freeman School of Engineering
  • Castle Hayne Elementary
  • Wrightsboro Elementary
  • Mary C. Williams Elementary
  • Pine Valley Elementary
  • Sunset Park Elementary
  • D.C. Virgo Preparatory Academy: UNCW
  • Emma B. Trask Middle School
  • College Park Elementary
  • Annie H. Snipes Academy of Arts & Design
  • New Hanover High School
  • Edwin A. Alderman Elementary
  • Winter Park Elementary
  • Mary Washington Howe Pre-K Center



2222 S. College Rd.
Wilmington, North Carolina
(910) 798-6400

New Hanover County Senior Resource Center staff will provide a drive-thru lunch option for those customers who participate in the congregate program and/or are 60 or older. Registered Congregate Participants are encouraged to pick-up a carryout lunch Monday-Friday between 11 am and 1 pm at the Senior Resource Center,  or Monday-Wednesday between 12 and 12:30 pm at the Castle Hayne location (4544 Parmele Rd., Castle Hayne, NC). Congregate participants are encouraged to call at least one day prior to reserve a meal pick-up at 910-798-6420.

The Senior Resource Center will continue operating the Home Delivered Meals Program for its registered homebound participants.

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