Henry County church works to pay down student lunch debt

A church is helping to clear out school lunch debts for some Henry County students.

New Faith Christian Church announced Thursday it paid down more than $800 in unpaid school lunch accounts for students at Dutchtown Elementary School.

Bishop Eusebio Phelps said they have already paid down about $750 in debt at Stockbridge Elementary School this week.

They don’t plan to stop there. The bishop said he is making it his personal mission to help end the embarrassment of families not having enough to pay for lunches. He said it leads to students having trays of food taken away and even bullying from other students.

Bishop Phelps cites a statistic from the Atlanta Community Food Bank who states 23.2% of Georgia children live in food-insecure households, which is about one in four children. And he says it doesn’t just stop at home but carries over into the school.

The bishop said he will be working with local leaders, educators, and lawmakers to try to grow the program as big as he can. He says he is putting out a call-to-action for members of the community to rally behind ensuring no child goes hungry during the school day.