The federal summer food service program - Food That’s In When School is Out - has completed its first year of operation in Nevada. The food service program, which operated in June and July, was administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service and was the result of hard work by a committee of concerned citizens here in Nevada.
Jean Kresse, executive director of United Way of Story County, gathered a group to talk about establishing the program back in the fall of 2012. The task group committed to hosting an open site that serves all school-age children, 18 and under, with no requirements or qualifications.
Leadership at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church agreed to open their doors and allow the program to operate out of their kitchen and fellowship hall. Youth and Shelter Services took on the role of program sponsor.
Nutritious, well-balanced meals were provided by Heartland Senior Services, and snacks and supervised activities for youth were provided by community partners and volunteers.
Barb Mittman of YSS, who supervised the program, provided a list of interesting statistics about the program in its first year. Here’s a look at Food That’s In When School is Out "By the Numbers."
* 16 - Days that lunch was served
* 176 - Different young people who ate lunch at least one time (Lunches were served to four preschool age children, 48 early K age children, 29 middle and high school age children, 57 children who attend the Nevada Community Resource Center and nine YSS program participants. The program served 3 percent Asian, 7 percent black or African and 90 percent white [of which 27 percent was Hispanic] populations.)
* 1,094 - Total number of lunches served to children and youth
* 544 - Total number of snacks served to children and youth
* 68 - Average number of lunches served
* 34 - Average number of snacks served
* 94 - Greatest number of lunches served on a single day
* 49 - Greatest number of snacks served on a single day
* 7 - Number of HIRTA bus stops made to pick up kids
* 33 - Number of children/youths who rode the HIRTA bus at least once
* 108 - Volunteers who were on-site at least one day
* 40 - Volunteers who were on-site three or more days
* 21 - Volunteers who were on-site six or more days
* 6 - Volunteers who were on-site 10 or more days
* 15 - Volunteers who offered 15 or more hours of service on-site
* 729.25 - Total number of recorded hours of service on-site
* 115.25 - Most volunteer hours offered on-site in one day
* 55.5 - Most hours offered on-site by one adult volunteer (Ralph Manning)
* 36 - Most hours offered on-site by one youth volunteer (Emily Dittmer)
* 15 - Volunteer hours served by Boy Scouts (Boy Scout Troop 128)
* 40 - Community Service hours served
*22 - Business, agency and community partners involved in the program (These include Boy Scout Troop 128, Burke Marketing, churches of Nevada, city of Nevada through the library and parks and rec), GLFoster’s artWorks, Heartland Senior Services, HIRTA Public Transit, Iowa Department of Education, Iowa Sports Foundation, ISU Extension (Story County Iowa VERB), Mary Greeley Medical Center, Nevada Community Schools, Nevada Kiwanis clubs, Prairie Rivers of Iowa, Sports Bowl, State Bank & Trust, Story County Juvenile Court, Story County Medical Center (Wellness), St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, United Way of Story County, Youth & Shelter Services, Inc.)
Mittman listed the following things as being in "undocumented quantities - stacks, heaps, loads and oodles - books taken home, books read aloud, animal crackers and Elf Grahams consumed, Skittles sorted, apples cored and sliced, garbage bags used, hair nets used, food service gloves used, plates, bowls, spoons, forks, napkins and facial tissues, rolls of toilet paper and paper towels, displays of good character and manners, hugs and smiles, and the number of times someone said, "Hey, I know you!" in the community.