KN2E to host summer reading program for kids

Chad Frey
Butler County Times Gazette

After providing free summer meals for kids for nine years, Kids Need To Eat (KN2E) has phased out its popular Kidz Summer LunchBox program.

The LunchBox 2020 was its most ambitious and successful program. During a period of 13 weeks, over 9000 meals and 1000 weekend foodpacks were handed out at LunchBox meal sites.

This was only possible due to generous community support in the form of cash and in-kind donations, and volunteers. Particularly successful was its Teen Cash Stipend Program, providing a hybrid volunteer/stipend work experience that for many youth was their first “job”.

KN2E is a small nonprofit with no paid staff. It was founded in 2013 to focus on helping children to have a developmentally productive summer in terms of nutrition and enrichment activities.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are now ways that larger nonprofits – such as a school district, hospital, or city parks department – are in a better position to sponsor free summer meals.

As a result, KN2E’s Board of Directors downsized its involvement in providing summer meals. Instead, it will sponsor a summer reading program for children: Ready 2 Read! Summer Reading Fun for Kids Ages 4 – 9.

The focus of Ready to Read! (R2R) is on helping children who struggle to read at grade level, or at risk of having delayed reading skills.

Parents/caretakers are encouraged to register children during May. For details, like and follow Ready 2 Read on Facebook, or visit