Verse of the Day

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” — 1 John 1:7 Listen to chapter Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica. Powered by BibleGateway.com.

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Food Backpack Programs Flourishing

A group representing school partnerships at over 25 Loudoun County public  schools met on July 10th at Catoctin Elementary school in Leesburg, VA.  The participants shared many stories about how food backpacks were helping to curb hunger for hundreds of students.  The meeting also focused on lessons-learned and networking to improve service.  The following points highlight what has been working and challenges.  Future posts will address plans for ongoing collaboration by the group.

What’s working:

  1. Personal relational networks have been the most effective in communicating needs and connecting into food donors.
  2. Listening and being dependable in meeting any needs expressed by school officials.
  3. Maintaining 24/7 drop-off points for food donations.
  4. Maintaining highly decentralized food storage and distribution channels local to specific communities.

Challenges:

  1. Maintaining a consistent and dependable supply chain of food, e.g. securing specific commitments to fully load ‘x’ number of backpacks vs. stockpiling individual items in pantries to complete backpacks.
  2. Establishing relational connections with school officials and the people served, i.e. to learn of additional needs and to help with longer-term needs and root causes.
  3. Projecting a unified and consistent message to the community, i.e. awareness of needs and how the community can become involved.
  4. Over-burdening the same donors, businesses, etc. Seeking larger commitments from stakeholders in closer proximity to schools and communities, e.g. Leesburg businesses serving Leesburg schools.

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