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Free food market opens inside St. Louis area elementary school

"Having food available to the families, this really eliminates a huge barrier in their lives"

ST. LOUIS — A ribbon cutting ceremony took place Thursday morning to celebrate the opening of a free food market inside Highland Elementary School in the Riverview Gardens School District.

The area was targeted because it’s considered a food desert, with limited to no access to grocery stores.

This is the 7th in-school food market The Little Bit Foundation has brought into area schools. Little Bit focuses on the specific needs that exists in the community.

For more than 20 years, Little Bit has helped thousands of kids in the St. Louis area with essential items such as clothing, hygiene products and access to educational material. This is no different and aligns perfectly with their mission of helping the “whole” child. 

In partnership with the St. Louis Area Foodbank, and funds from Bayer, parents can come shop at the market stocked with nutritious options from Fresh Thyme Market.

Credit: KSDK

Principal Travis Ford Sr. is elated.

“This is another opportunity for us to say, 'hey, we see you, we notice you and we want to support you as a whole, we care about you,'” he said.

“Having food available to the families, this really eliminates a huge barrier in their lives,” said Lakricia Cox, Little Bit Foundation’s program director.

The St. Louis Area Foodbank has opened 25 markets like this in the area and said this one is just as exciting.

"When you step inside one of these it feels like you've been transported into a grocery store," said Michelle Madara of SLAFB.

The market will be open every Thursday morning by appointment only. It serves families at Highland and Glasgow Elementary schools and is completely free of charge.