City Times Staff
Sixth-graders at McKinley are doing everything they can do combat hunger.
For the past three years, sixth-grade students at McKinley Center Elementary engage in a service project; one that typically reaches out for community support in raising donations to help The Salvation Army Hope Center or Operation Bootstrap.
But this year, students and staff wanted to help some of their own–particularly after noting an uptick in “food hardships” at the school, according to a news release from the district.
Students and staff began a “Feed the Monster” campaign earlier this year., asking their fellow schoolmates to donate non-perishable food items to be sent home, free of charge, through a food backpack program.
On the last day of school each week, identified students will be sent home with a backpack filled with healthy food and snacks to eat over the weekend.
“Each backpack contains enough food for two light breakfasts, two lunches and two dinners, as well as a number of snacks for the children over the weekend,” the news release reads in part.
Students then return the empty backpack to school the next week so that it can be re-stocked and sent home again.
“We’ve had wonderful support from our school family,” said McKinley teacher Jill Schraufnagel said. “The students’ ‘Feed the Monster’ campaign brought in enough donations for us to begin the program, and we’ve seen donations begin to come in from the community as well.”
Staff at McKinley will continue the food backpack program throughout the school year. Monetary donations can be sent to McKinley Center Elementary, 2926 Blaine St., Stevens Point, Wis., 54481.
“The need is real,” Schraufnagel added. “We forget sometimes that it isn’t an anonymous person or family who may be struggling, but someone sitting right next to you. The students really were eager to be able to make this happen for our school.”