Kristen Thomson Riley, Michelle Anderson And Public Nevin North Carolina discussed on It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders


Oh I know this Berkshire today now is a big one. I told her remember that far back but I do remember being incredibly sake that I got to Bhai twinkies highlight of lunch so I bring all this up because we're in the midst of back to school season and I've been thinking a lot about school lunches empire because of this really feel good story out of Saint Louis last week. There's this resident there Michelle Anderson and she has been giving out out free snack bags two kids in her neighbourhood who might be going hungry each day. I would just wonder like how would I would. I provide this for them. So I started making peanut butter and Jelly. I will take my change and it just went from there. You know this sounds like a feel good story but if you look past that warm fuzzy headline there's this larger problem. Federal data shows that more than one in ten American households with children are at some point food insecure insecure. Basically it's hard to feed everyone every meal every day. I like a lot of other folks just went around thinking that these kids could at least eat at school all through the free and reduced lunch programs et Cetera but even with that help. There's a growing problem for a lot of kids and their families dealing with food security school meal debt like. Did you know that for some kids in some school districts if they can't pay for their lunches the crew a negative balance for some of these kids that a debt can follow them. I didn't know the debt follows them but I did know that this was a problem and I knew that the school districts around the country threatening ending parents in various ways if we're not paid it's really really weird and this problem seems to be growing and so this week we found a woman in North Carolina who is trying to fix problems. She's been on a mission for a few years now to erase student debt in her school district. Her name is Kristen Thomson Riley and she began again doing this work to mark the twentieth anniversary of her father's death so we spoke earlier this week and she told me why and how she does it so kristen recalling you to talk about student launch de. This is a problem in your school district right. It is a problem in our school district and by the end of the school year if the students do not pay the debt and the debt falls on the responsibility of that particular school so then the school stuck with this bill from your knowledge. How big of a problem is this in your school district in your area. It's definitely a growing problem it initially when I started doing some research. It was several hundred dollars per school and last year. Actually I'm sorry this year March of Twenty Nineteen nineteen it was over ten thousand dollars for five of the local Public Nevin North Carolina schools and so we call Ju- issue today because you saw that problem student meal debt and you wanted to help turn that around what did you do so in two thousand fourteen. I decided to you do a day of good deeds and as part of that I had read an article where a gentleman had gone into a school and paid off the negative lunch balances and you you know it hit close to me and I thought well that would be a great thing to do so I reached out to a teacher at the high school who was a friend of mine who had connections with the Cafeteria Korea and he told me that their debt was five hundred and fifty dollars and I reached out just via text to about a dozen friends who also had children children at the high school and we raised six hundred and fifty dollars and the

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