Today, the Sheridan School District and volunteers from local churches distributed boxes of groceries to more than 1,300 children in the community to ensure they would have healthy meals to eat over Christmas Break. The groceries will provide close to 38,000 meals over the two-week period.
“To put that in perspective,” said Lauren Goins, Sheridan’s director of communications, “we ordered so much food to distribute that we did not even have enough room to store it all. Our Dining Services Director Tiffany Reed convinced our two major vendors, Highland Dairy and Sysco, to leave their temperature-controlled delivery trucks with us so we could store their products until we could distribute the food.”
Even the high school cafeteria was used as storage space for canned goods this week. Next to tables and chairs you would find stacks of canned vegetables and jars of applesauce along the cafeteria wall.
According to Dining Services Director Tiffany Reed, the district ordered 2,000 gallons of milk, 2004 pounds of turkey, 2,000 loaves of bread, 5,000 pounds of vegetables, plus much more.
Families had the option to pick up their groceries or have the groceries delivered to their home. Families who picked up their groceries in the afternoon were greeted by Santa Claus who was there to hand out candy canes to children in the drive-through. District administrators and staff as well as many volunteers from local churches delivered boxes of food to those families who could not pick up their items.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to serve our community in this way,” said Superintendent Jerrod Williams. “This was a huge undertaking. I’m thankful to our dining services department and volunteers from our local churches who were eager to make this happen.”
Funding for the Christmas Break meals was made possible by waivers granted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to allow for students to be fed on non-instructional days within the school calendar. Through these waivers, the district also provided more than 13,000 meals during Thanksgiving Break and 106,000 during the summer months.