Tuesday, January 13, 2009

We Have Food!

After months of working on my biggest project ever, finally there is a reward. I'm so happy, happy, happy today. Ok, so back in July, I started working on bringing a Backpack program to my neighborhood elementary school. Backpack, if you don't know, provides a backpack of food on Fridays to kids who rely on school lunch and breakfast for food. No school, no food. That makes weekends tough and the kids spend a lot of time obsessing about how they can get as much food as they can so they can make it through the weekend. They are unable to think when they are at school about anything else but their next meal and where it will come from. Backpack takes away some of that pressure so they can focus on learning and hopefully learn enough to get them out of that situation when they are grown. Well, today, the truck finally came and on Friday, we are handing out backpacks. I am telling you, I have been doing the happy dance ever since I actually had my hands on that food. I had to see, touch, and put it away just to believe it was really here. There have definitely been many highs and lows throughout the process.

"The Mountain Man Delivery Service" as they called themselves. I thought more like ZZ Top. These guys are the best no matter what they're called. I had to hug them in fact. I was so happy to see them.

We had a few 6th grade boys come and help us unload the truck. They were so helpful. This guy let me take his picture. 6th grade boys are apparently camera shy. Who knew?

The Idaho Food Bank has volunteers fill grocery bags with the food for each backpack. This is what 114 backpack bags look like. That will get our school through 1 month. You can even get a group together and go to Pocatello to fill bags. I think it sounds like a great time. Maybe I just don't know what fun is.
This is what's in each backpack bag. Shelf stable milk (which I didn't even know existed until I learned about Backpack), 100% juice, beans and franks, beef stew, Easy Mac, ramen noodles, 2 cereal packages, applesauce, 2 peanut butter crackers, 2 raisins, and 4 small peanut butters. Not exactly 6 squares but will help them through the weekend.

I'm so excited to finally have it here. I didn't really think this was a big problem in Idaho. I was pretty naive. 93% of this one little elementary school qualifies for free and reduced lunch. That means their families are at or below the poverty line. Of those kids it looks like we will need to provide backpacks to 26 kids so far. But I expect it to go up. That's 26 kids who don't eat! I am working hard to make sure the Idaho Food Bank gets the funding it needs to keep these sweet kids in food. You just never know what a child will become. Some of them just need a little help in seeing and fulfilling their potential. Hopefully their backpacks will provide them with that and most of all let them have hope. Can't wait to see their faces on Friday!


  1. Way to go sista girl! You got it done! I am proud of you! When you first brought up this crazy idea, I thought it would take years to get this funded and done, but you pulled it off in a couple months time. More people should be like you!

  2. You...are...amazing!! The world needs more people like you! I feel very blessed to know you, to have such an amazing women, mother, and wife as my dear friend! Love ya!

  3. Love it! I think it sounds WAY fun! You are such an awesome chickie! You deserve some sort of award for all the amazingness that you do.