LIFE

Elementary School Turns Cafeteria Leftovers Into Frozen Meals So No Students Go Hungry

by Amy Paige
Amy is the Director of Trending Content at LittleThings. After graduating from Florida State University with a creative writing degree, she moved straight to New York City to pursue a career in the arts. She loves discovering and sharing viral videos, watching movies with her Muppet-like poodle mix named Cali, and doing the robot whenever possible.

Countless children in the United States depend on their school breakfasts and/or lunches to stay fed.

Sadly, many kids don’t receive proper nutrition, or even enough food, once they exit those school doors.

The food services department at Elkhart Community Schools in Indiana realized a large amount of cafeteria food was going to waste each week, but the district didn’t know what to do with all the leftovers. At the same time, staff knew children were going home on the weekends without much, if anything, to eat.

So Elkhart Schools began taking part in a brilliant idea.

It teamed up with a nonprofit organization called Cultivate for a pilot program that provides meals to a small group of eligible students — ensuring they have enough to eat during evenings and weekends.

“We rescue food that’s been made but never served by catering companies … like the school system,” said Jim Conklin of Cultivate. “You don’t always think of a school system.”

The program rescues the well-prepared yet unused foods and turns them into individual, take-home frozen meals.

As you’ll see in the video below, it sounds like this is something that could be implemented in schools around the country.

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