DENVER — Feeding thousands of students is already a challenge, but keeping those children fed through a city-wide shutdown is even trickier. Organizers at the Cherry Creek School District outside of Denver are continuing to expand their delivery routes for food going to roughly 4,500 students now stuck at home due to the coronavirus pandemic in our state.
"Every day we are providing a full breakfastk, a full lunch, two fruits, a vegetable, and also their daily milk intake too," explained Brandon Durio, the executive chef for the Cherry Creek School District. He has been tasked with boxing thousands of meals for students to eat at home. "We are providing enough for a full well-balanced meal every single day for those families."
But there are still several hundred families that are not being reached. Organizers with the district said there are over 5,000 students who received meals through the district. There is also concern that the economic slowdown will increase that need.
"The numbers just keep rising day to day," said Durio. As the demand has increased, the district moved from seven drop-off locations to eleven. "When we know we are running out, we just plan for more the next day."
Families receiving the meals said nutrition supplementation through the deliveries could not come at a better time.
"It is very, very helpful. Especially at a time like this," said Crystal Williams, whose son is a student in Cherry Creek. "It might not be everything you need but at least it’s something. That means a lot and yes, they are heroes."