The Snack Pack 4 Kids program is seeing success in the Borger area.
The mission of the program is to end weekend hunger for children living in the Texas panhandle by providing a backpack filled with kid friendly snacks each Friday of the school year. Borger Independent School District is among 15 school districts in the area participating in the program, and has been doing so since late 2012.
Volunteers pack around 10 to 12 nutritious snacks in plastic bags, deliver them to the school, and place them in backpacks to be discreetly sent home each Friday. Targeted students are those who live in food-insecure homes as identified by the school staff.
Barbie Schroeder, who is overseeing the program for the district, said December was the second month for the program, and she is encouraging people to come out and help make snack packs for kids tomorrow, January 8, at 6 p.m. the Borger ISD Administration Building, located at 200 East Ninth. Borger ISD employees have volunteered time for the cause.
In November, she said the program identified 70 kids who were in need of this program, and 365 bags of food were packed. Over one hundred people showed up to pack the sacks, and it took 17 minutes to pack all of the sacks.
Last month, the program identified 98 children who were in need, and 490 bags of food were packed. Close to 150 people showed up to help pack bags.
Among those helping with the program has been the Borger girls golf team, who have helped with setup for the program. Also helping with that were representatives from the Masons and other community members. She said Borger ISD staff members have been great in helping with the program, and local children have also helped with the cause. Schroeder said a seven-year-old girl and her birthday party guests came to help last month before they went out to celebrate.
â€śIt was just so cool to see something like that,â€ť Schroeder said.
She said Grace Church in Borger has come out to deliver the totes to the students who qualify at Gateway Elementary, which is Borgerâ€™s first and second grade campus. She said by far Gateway has had the most totes of food in the program.
All of the food totes are stored in rooms in the back of the school buildings and are kept very secure.
Schroeder said she overheard some ladies talking about the program in United and how great it was, with one of them saying it was great they were able to use their normal food money to help purchase shoes for their child. Three high school students said they were able to use their food money for rent this month.
She said a wide variety of people and ages have been involved, and it has been working great.
â€śIt takes a lot to get it all together, but when itâ€™s together, itâ€™s rolling, and itâ€™s rolling really well,â€ť she said.
Volunteers get together the second Tuesday of every month at 6 p.m. The program is donations only.
The program received $3,000 at the beginning, which Schroeder said she hoped would last a couple of months. However, last monthâ€™s food cost $1,800 in total. She said area groups have been collecting peanut butter and pop tarts, which are the two items that canâ€™t be purchased. She said she is hopeful more contributions can come in.
To make a donation on behalf of Borger ISDâ€™s Snack Pack 4 Kids program, log on to www.borgerisd.net and scroll to the bottom to find the link to the organizationâ€™s web site. Follow the link and select â€śdonate nowâ€ť.
For more information on the program, call 273-1000.