Full Plates Full Potential is on a mission to end child hunger in Maine, and we’re just getting started. Born of the idea that no child should grow up hungry, we take a collaborative approach to effect lasting change and we’re certain that solutions are within reach.
Our strategy is to maximize access to USDA Child Nutrition programs - commonly known as school lunch, school breakfast, afterschool meals, and summer meals - which promise free meals to every child who needs them, and Maine kids need them. Our youth suffer the highest rate of child food insecurity in New England. Prior to the pandemic, 80,000 Maine kids relied on school meals daily. Due to economic hardships caused by COVID-19, the number of children experiencing food insecurity, statewide, has increased significantly.
School meals are the cornerstone of combating food insecurity for Maine kids. Sadly, too many face barriers to accessing these meals. Full Plates works to remove logistical and social barriers by providing technical and financial assistance to schools and communities across the state to help feed kids now, while advocating for systemic changes necessary to ensure that all Maine children have consistent access to nutritious meals.
Full Plates Full Potential was established in 2014 and not a moment too soon. In our early years, we worked to build capacity, consensus, and trust, positioning our organization to launch a rapid-response when the largest food security crisis children have faced in a century struck.
When John Woods and Justin Alfond founded Full Plates, they did so with a vision for Maine becoming a state in which no child grows up hungry. Even before a global pandemic, they recognized that child hunger was a crisis for every child experiencing food insecurity. While the pandemic laid bare and exacerbated the scourge of child hunger, it will not subside as COVID-19 does. Whether you found your way to our work before the pandemic or because of it, we invite you to stay with us until every Maine child has consistent access to nutritious meals. We’re closer than ever.
Since our inception, Full Plates has granted more than $3 million to child nutrition programs in every Maine county - $2.6 million of which has been issued since COVID-19 first forced schools to transition to remote learning in March 2020. These emergency pandemic grants have been critical in helping to navigate the challenges of feeding kids in school and at home, often simultaneously, while adhering to complex and expensive virus-mitigation protocols.
Meet our Team
Advocacy & Implementation Director
Child Nutrition Consultant
Operations & Evaluation Manager
Donor Engagement Manager
Community Engagement VISTA
Development Partnerships Manager
Partnerships & Policy Coordinator
Child Nutrition Consultant
Board of Directors
Julie Butcher Pezzino
Full Plates Full Potential Supporting Organizations
The Full Plates Full Potential supporting organizations are a wide range of businesses that all have a significant role to play in ending child hunger. These companies are positioned to help implement opportunities, raise awareness, and invest funds that directly connect food-insecure kids in Maine with nutritious meals.
Questions or comments about our organization and what we do? We want to hear from you! Fill out our contact form with your name, email address, and message, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!
14 Maine Street
Brunswick, ME 04011