EATON — Eaton Community School families in need of food for their students are able to pickup a bag from the district containing five days of breakfast and lunch items. The first distribution day was held on Thursday, March 26, but the food bags are available for pickup every Thursday from 5-7 p.m. until school is back in the building or the summer.
All locations are drive-thru stations. Meal pick up will be at the building the child attends: if your family has multiple children in multiple buildings, families are being asked to pick up meals for all students at the building of your oldest child. Pick up was also available at Lakengren Marina for students who live in Lakengren and pick up at Roberts Tractor Supply in Morning Sun for students who live in Morning Sun and Fairhaven.
According to Superintendent Jeff Parker, the Eaton Eagles Food Distribution was planned knowing many students depend on the breakfast and lunch provided at their school building.
“We’re trying to do the best we can in feeding our kids, those that are in need. With this situation, we know those in need have increased,” he said. “We have 1,000 bags we packed today, we started planning last week ordering and organizing how the packing has gone.
“It’s been tremendous, the volunteers. We are in the neighborhood of 100 plus volunteers throughout – this is our staff. It is Eaton Community Schools employees coming in to help pack and with the distribution. Our plan is to use our staff when we do these.”
Staff volunteers were ready and willing to help out in any way they could to make these distribution days possible.
“I don’t think I could have kept them away, if you want to know the truth. It really weighs on them about what is going on with our students at home, in terms of being fed,” Parker said.
“They see and know about the needs of our students. It just made sense. I’ve been very intentional with any communication I’ve had with anyone saying it is an ‘in the school buidling closure’ – because school is not closed! It is a different kind of work than our teachers are used to, but they are working extremely hard. This weighs on them.”
Parker believes that education is more than academics – it is the districts “responsibility” to make sure their children are fed during this unprecedented time.
“It is our responsibility to help and for so many children they depend on the meals they get at school. If we didn’t provide this, how many children would go without? Or go with very little? I see it – and I know our staff does too – as our responsibility,” he said.
To find out more about the food distribution, visit eatoncommunityschools.org or stay tuned to One Call notifications.
Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH