This school year Running Strong for American Indian Youth® is working to ensure that hundreds of students at the Keshena Primary School on the Menominee Indian Reservation in Keshena, Wisconsin, and at the Wakpala School on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Reservation in South Dakota and their family members do not go hungry over the weekends.
Through our Smart Sacks program, at the end of each week we provide hundreds of students with bags filled with nonperishable food items, enough to feed a family of four for the weekend so that students do not arrive at school Monday morning famished from not having an actual meal since their school lunch on Friday.
At the Menominee school, Tina Waupoose reported that for the month of November alone, 1,248 bags were distributed containing items including blueberry biscuits, chicken ramen, peanut butter crackers, fruit cups and pudding cups.
“Students are parents were very pleased with the products sent home,” Tina reported. “Students were very grateful to receive the food items we selected for the month.”
At the Wakpala school, thanks to the supporters of Running Strong, each school week 180 students are provided with Smart Sacks to take home to their families.
In addition to the two schools participating in our Smart Sacks program, Running Strong also supports a food pantry at the Takini School on the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation which provides 175 food boxes to students’ families monthly.
However, during the winter a water pipe broke forcing the school to be closed for days and delaying food boxes distribution, but we are pleased to report that the pipe has been repaired and the food box distribution is resuming.