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Better Health Outcomes at Lower Costs


We believe that children are the foundation of our future. Providing for the care and well-being, both physical and mental, of all children is imperative the Centene Charitable Foundation.

Centene Charitable Foundation has sponsored more than $15,000 to St. Louis-based Operation Food Search’s weekend feeding program for children, Operation Backpack. Through this leadership contribution, Operation Food Search will be sending home backpacks of nutritious food to 100 children from low-income families every weekend of the 2013-14 academic year. In addition to this sponsorship, Centene is also donating over 600 children’s books and activity guides from the company’s award-winning book series, The Adventures of Boingg & Sprockette, which will be included in the backpacks. The books range in topics from healthy nutrition and fitness, to advice on avoiding-smoking tobacco, and maintaining good hygiene.

In the St. Louis public schools, 85 percent of the children rely on free or reduced-cost meal programs. Without Operation Backpack, some of these children would receive little to no food on weekends.

“With so many children going home on weekends to no food, it is crucial for us to help relieve the hunger problem,” said Sunny L. Schaefer, executive director, Operation Food Search. “Centene’s support of the Operation Backpack program shows a commitment to improving the health of our community, one nutritious meal at a time.”

During the 2013-14 academic year, Operation Backpack is working with nine school districts across the St. Louis metro area to supply over 4,000 low-income children with backpacks each weekend. Each backpack is filled with six nutritious meals, plus healthy snacks. Over 115,000 backpacks will be provided to these children before the end of the school year.