Operation Backpack Logo

Hunger doesn’t take a weekend break.

Operation Backpack provides weekly sacks of kid-friendly, shelf-stable food to get students through the weekend when school meals are not available. Participating children are discreetly given these backpacks to take home, enabling them to come back to school on Monday with the good nutrition and focus they need to achieve academic success.

Key Facts

Operation Backpack has been one of our most successful programs since it started in 2006.
Approximately 6,500 backpacks are distributed each week across 15 counties in MO and IL.
All of the food is purchased by OFS to ensure quality and safety.
In 2023, Operation Backpack provided over more than 615,000 meals to students in 352 locations.

How Operation Backpack Impacts Children

Operation Backpack promotion photo

87% of school personnel have seen a positive impact on the families of students who participate in Operation Backpack.

Operation Backpack promotion photo

Nearly 60% of the teachers surveyed noted an improvement in academic performance and behavior from participating students.

Operation Backpack promotion photo

Food assistance—which helps relieve both emotional and economic stress for the family—means children can learn more and worry less.


Please contact Program Coordinator Amanda Noelker to express your interest in a partnership for this coming school year.