During our third full academic school year, the Douglas County Backpack Buddies Consortium, in partnership with Minden Rotary Club Foundation, served 11 schools and over 500 children with weekend backpacks of non-perishable food. These backpacks consistently meet the minimum USDA requirements of calories for the seven meals over the weekend. In total, we distributed over 100,000 pounds of food. We also distributed 900 hygiene packets to 12 schools and supported six school nurses with regular deliveries of snacks, juice and other nutritional products.
Our community has been very generous with food and financial donations, which allow us to be sustainable and stable. Our collaboration with other social service and food service agencies helps to keep our services consistent and affordable — BBP participants can count on us each Friday for weekend food.
Over 4,300 volunteer hours were donated to the program. These generous volunteers are what keep the Backpack Buddy Program going forward and meeting the weekend food needs of in-need children in our community. As in the past, financial donations are used almost exclusively for food purchases, food storage and distribution. Office supply expenses are covered by two donors who have specified their donations be earmarked for minor administrative costs. Food drives and fundraising are ongoing.
Survey results received in December 2012 from backpack program coordinators, counselors, nurses, teachers, and parents show that 88 percent stated that the BBP has a positive impact on academic performance and 89 percent say that the BBP has a positive impact on reducing behavioral issues at school.
We express our gratitude to all who in their hearts and through their giving have supported the Consortium in our efforts to help the in-need children in Douglas County.
Douglas County Backpack Buddies Consortium Committee