Stanislaus Union School District continues to provide free meals to families in need amid pandemic

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STANISLAUS COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — A small school district in Stanislaus County is serving up nourishment to hundreds of families, thanks in part to state funding, and in large part, due to the dedicated staff of the Stanislaus Union School District.

Since the beginning of March, the district has been able to provide free meals to Modesto kids and their families.

In goes some orange juice, throw in some cheese and an apple: both tireless work thanks to essential workers and a recipe that will help families in need. 

“When they offered that to where they would deliver it here at our door, it really lightened the load,” said Bob Cole, who is legally blind.

“Life for me is a colorful fog,” he told FOX40.

As a full-time student and a single father to two young boys, Cole said the Stanislaus Union School District’s food program has been a lifesaver.

“Really not possible to get out during the time that they would be distributing lunch at the school, so when they started delivering, it made life a heck of a lot easier,” he said.

Shena Wilson, an office specialist at the Food Service Department, said the pandemic may have forced students off-campus, but hunger remains.

“Students and families don’t have a lot right now, and we want to make sure that we’re feeding kids that don’t have the food at home that they may have had before,” she said.

They are now providing breakfast and lunch for 700 students and their families for 14 days.

Financially, it was made possible due to state funding.

Logistically, it is all thanks to the dedication of each and every staff member.

“We all try to provide for these families, and we’re all here to do what we need to do to get our service out there to everybody,” said kitchen helper Lupita Glushenko.

The food in the bins will help feed families for at least two weeks.

Cole said that the food is nourishment in more ways than one.

“It’s been quite a crazy situation and my thing is just trying to always be kind to people,” he said.

The staff will continue putting meals together until this Wednesday. They return to work Jan. 11.

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