Lunch program that makes sure all students are fed, in need of donations

GOTHENBURG, Neb. (KNOP) - The lunch staff at Gothenburg Public Schools serves elementary, middle school and high school aged students breakfast or brunch and lunch each school day.

There are about 600 students that report for lunch each day and it takes nearly two hours of continuous service to get to them all.

Several students families cannot afford the meals for each child everyday, especially those with large families.

Joni Jacobsen noticed this need and started the "Lunch Buddies" program in 2004.

"We feed about 12 to 13 hundred meals a day. I've got the best staff that's why that works," said Jacobsen. "If there are three people in a family and I have funds to do so, I will start out with one student per family and when the funds are replenished, then we go again and see if we can help more students."

The program is designed as an anonymous donation that is utilized for the students who are unable to pay for the reduced prices lunches.

"It's completely anonymous. It's against federal regulation to ever identfiy a student in anyway who gets free, or reduced price lunches," said Jacobsen.

Jacobsen said they used to have an anonymous donor whom was a retired veteran that would donate regularly to the program, solely funding it for a while. He has since passed away and left the program without that donation leaving them looking to fill that void so they can continue to assist their students in need.

If you would like to donate, contact Gothenburg Public Schools at 308-537-3651 ext. 6127 and ask for Joni.