1. An eighth-grade student
Ben Hofer, an eighth-grader in Austin, Texas, raised $8,000 to go toward meal debt at Austin Independent School District as part of a school project. Students at Austin ISD receive a hot meal regardless of whether they can pay. The district currently has almost $18,000 in meal debt.
2. Valerie Castile
Valerie Castile wrote an $8,000 check to Robbinsdale Area Schools to help the Minnesota district cover its unpaid meal balance of over $300,000. The donation was made in honor of her son, Philando Castile, who worked as a cafeteria supervisor at the district before he was shot and killed by a police officer in 2016.
Yogurt company Chobani donated close to $50,000 to cover unpaid lunch balances at Warwick Public Schools in Warwick, R.I. The district recently made headlines for its policy of serving a cold sunflower butter and jelly sandwich to students who couldn’t pay for their meal.
4. A local foundation
The Brookfield Fallen Firefighters Foundation donated $2,500 to Brookfield Local Schools in Brookfield Township, Ohio, to help cover unpaid meal balances. The donation will pay off almost 300 families’ lunch debt.