Stories from the Children
Mary is always asking her counselor , "When will the McBackpack be here?"
The counselor asks why she is so interested.
"Because when I take my bag home, my grandma and I put it all out on the table
and we make as many meals as we can with it. Then we both know what we will
have to eat. Somtimes I help cook the meals."
One day school staff observed students taking items out of their food bags and handing them to another girl new to the school (a no-no by school rules,
so the students were asked why:
"Because Sharyl doesn't get any bags yet, and her mom and her don't have much food. Now their peanut butter is even gone, so we gave her some of our food."
This story always gets to me because here are kids sharing when they hardly have enough for their own families.
A grandma relates, "I noticed Amy, my first grader, almost dancing when she opened her bag and I asked why."
Amy said, "Because this week we got 'Busgeti' and it's my (sic) favor-ite."
"Mommy, look we got peanut butter, raisins, and two apples. I can make my own peanut butter and jelly sandwich and an apple to take to school and then I get to sit
with the other kids who bring their own lunches."
This was her first home-made lunch.
Bobby said, "When I bring my bag of food I feel like a grown-up because I am helping my whole family."
One year, two days before Thanksgiving, a family of five (grandmother and mother and three children) were forced to give up their hotel room. Three weeks before,
they had lost their home. A principal called one of McBackpack's founders and asked, "You told me I could call you if I ever needed to. Can
you help this family today? Please."
The founder immediately tapped into the network that supports McBackpack and before the day was out food and lodging were provided for a month and the principal was given contacts for the future, if needed.
- Dale Lake in the October 2014 First Prebyterian Church Newsletter
A McBackpack Story
We have the best kids here... They work so hard at school and always are taking care and watching out for others at their school. Empathy is one of our school-wide
expectations and this story is a true example of the spirit of our children.
Two staff members came to me after school very concerned. They witnessed students who receive the weekly food backpacks giving peanut butter and other food from their backpacks
to another student. The staff members were concerned and upset as to why students who were receiving this food every week would be giving away this food for their families. They
questioned whether these students even actually needed the food. I assured them that all the students receiving the weekly food backpacks were in need and that I would look into in on Monday.
On Monday morning I went to pull the student who had received the food from the other students to see if she was in need of support from us. I asked her how things were going at school
and home and she reported that things were ok. I then told her that other teachers had seen students giving her food from their food backpacks and asked her what the situation was. She
then broke down and told me her story. Her mother has Multiple Sclerosis and lost her job. Her mother had been been very tired and wasn't feeling well. In addition, her
fourteen-year-old sister had also been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis ans was having a hard time. She said that they had been living on peanut butter and jelly and cereal for many
weeks. The kids were giving her their peanut butter because her family had run out and they also had given her some of their other food because they were so kind. She said she
didn't want to ask for a food backpack because she did have food to eat. I explained to her that the food backpacks were for anyone who needed food support over the weekend and that
there were plenty of food backpacks for all of our students, including her. She was so happy and relieved. I gave her one of our special food backpack letters and she brought
it back the next day. The students who had been giving her food were excited for her and even helped her on the bus with her food backpack that Friday.
I wanted you to know how much the food backpack program means to our students and families. Thank you for supporting our families each and every week with this program. The
food provides more than just nourishment for their bodies, but gives them an opportunity to help their families and beyond.
Why I am So Happy on Thursdays
It is Thursday morning and I find myself glowing with love. I am walking
with an easy free feeling and greeting everyone I see with a big smile
and warm hello. I feel great and want to share my joy of life with
everyone. I feel good about myself and the world I live in. Then I asked
myself WHY do I feel so much joy in my heart today?
I started my day with McBackpack. I was able to volunteer my time for a
most worthy cause -- but it is the other PEOPLE, my fellow volunteers,
who fill my heart with so much love. Working with such an awesome group
of kind an loving people -- I truly feel like a better person. The sense
of caring and need to take care of those who are less fortunate is in
each and every person. I feel like belonging to such a group is
McBackpack volunteers are a mixed bag- all different ages and all
different backgrounds, but there is a common thread that binds us
together and that is compassion. We all know that helping to feed the
kids in the Poudre School District who need food on weekends is
commendable. We also know that giving our time for such an organization
makes us an important part of our community.
I am so proud to call myself a Mcbackpacker!
- A McBackback Volunteer