CABOT, Ark. (KTHV) - Students in the Cabot School District are out of school for an entire week for the Thanksgiving holiday, leaving several students who may get their only meals at school without.
A Cabot community outreach program is providing students with meals during their Thanksgiving break.
The clock ticks as volunteers put the final touches on the food and prepare for the days visitors. Grilled cheese sandwiches are on today's menu.
Susan Hedin says, "There were several people that would say they didn't know what they were going to do if there hadn't been some lunch served." In 2012 Hedin created Lunchbox Connection. It is an outreach program in Cabot that feeds students while they are out of school for holiday breaks.
"It is very helpful because it gives them a schedule of things to do. It gives them a good meal," one grandmother explains. Angela Weaver is raising her two grandchildren and admits with Cabot students being out of school for the entire week-feeding them meals that they normally get in school-can become a bit of a financial burden. Weaver continues, "My level of income is not real high but we do our best and I think we do pretty good but the school seems to help quite a bit."
Not only can students get a hot meal, but they can also participate in arts and craft activities-something to keep them occupied and their brain off of the day's worries.
"It's amazing," Hedin says. So far this week between Ward Elementary and Central Elementary 177 people have been served. What began as just a dream is now a reality and Hedin is able to see a need being met, one mouth at a time. Hedin adds,"It's the best feeling in the world and the only way to fix it is just to keep doing it and it'll spread further."