Donors Pay Off Student Lunch Debt

A Community of Kindness: Donors Pay Off Student Lunch Debt
Posted on 12/19/2019
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The week of December 9th, two anonymous benefactors paid off students’ lunch debt at Shadow Hills Elementary and Timberline High School. Television station KTVB caught wind of the generous acts and covered the story, along with the deep gratitude from the District. 

Within minutes of the great news hitting the airwaves Wednesday night, generous people from across Boise began contacting schools, District administrators and the Boise Public Schools Foundation to ask how they could help with student meal debt at local schools. 

“There was an ‘angel’ who hit 4 schools (Capital, Fairmont, Valley View, and Maple Grove) for a total of $5,150 in donations,” explained Food Services Supervisor Christy Smith. “It’s been truly amazing to watch this unfold as more and more anonymous donors come forward in our community to pay off student meal debt.”

“The holidays can be particularly difficult for families in need,” explained Capital High Principal Derek Gardner.  “They often feel an obligation to give to others, even when they don't have the means themselves. It can compound an already stressful situation.  Donations like this help alleviate the emotional burden, in addition to the obvious financial struggle. This is an unbelievable reprieve for our families.  We are grateful for the donation. “

As of the time of this writing (December 13, 2019),  28 schools in the Boise School District have received donations totaling $15,000 to help erase student meal debt.  Total outstanding student meal debt in the District currently stands at $17,500. Update - December 19, 2019: An anonymous donor has come forward with an $18,000 donation to pay off remaining student lunch debt that currently exists in the Boise School District.

“We are truly inspired by these generous acts of kindness,” said Dan Hollar, public affairs administrator, Boise School District. “To all of the dozens of donors, on behalf of our students and families, we’d like to express our sincere heartfelt gratitude for supporting our public school children and our families through these incredible acts of generosity and kindness. It is yet another sign of the caring and kind community in which we all live and work."

If you would like to support student school lunch debt in the future, please contact Christy Smith at the District Food & Nutrition Services department at christy.smith@boiseschools.org or Boise Schools Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Henderson at jennifer.henderson@boiseschools.org.