Phyllis Shaughnessy was dismayed when she learned the local snack program for low-income students would be cut for the summer.
Shaughnessy is a retired postmaster and a part-time substitute educator in Copalis Beach, Washington. From her experience working with children, she would know that there are 15, 000 children and teens living below the poverty line in Grays Harbor County, where her town is situated.
During the school year, low-income students can get their lunches through free or discounted meal programs at school.
But this year, the North Beach School District was forced to cut summertime meals when the U.S. Department of Agriculture( USDA) made a change to their grant requiring the snacks be served in a single location a nearly impossible task in a region with a spread out rural population.
Realizing that local low-income families couldn’t afford to fill this gap, Shaughnessy decided to fill the gap herself.
Shaughnessy acquired a caterer’s license and began bringing lunches to kids who were affected by the summer lunch program cut. She called the program ” Green Lantern Lunches” after Green Lantern Pub in Copalis Beach, whose owneds offered the pub’s kitchen to prepare snacks.
The pub does other cool stuff too, like host Harley-Davidson weekends:
Maybe they could deliver lunches? Green Lantern Pub/ Facebook, used in conjunction with permission.
Every morning, Shaughnessy and a handful of volunteers delivered lunches to more than 200 low-income infants . 90 of those lunches were delivered by Shaughnessy herself.
Parents told reporters for USA Today how much their children enjoy ensure Shaughnessy each morning. The kids have come to anticipate the sight of her navy blue car with the custom-made “Green Lantern Lunches” signs on its doorways.
All GIFS via USA Today/ YouTube.
In USA Today’s video, Shaughnessy tells she doesn’t simply do it to give the children food, she does it for the human connection it brings, for “love and hope”.
“They need to know that somebody cares, ” she says.
As of August, Shaughnessy and other volunteers reported delivering 6,851 meals . A recent feature on the present “The Real” put an updated estimation at 10,000 dinners . That’s amazing .
The program is now looking to purchase school supplies and offer the children with meals on weekends and holidays.
They have set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds to keep their awesome program going.
I’m from Seattle and my mommy and I have taken journeys to Copalis Beach since I was a little kid. I recollect driving past Green Lantern Tavern with its vibrant green walls and trim( and finally going in for a drinking after I’d turned 21 ). This area gave me a lot of happy memories, and I wish its residents all the best.
Cheers to Phyllis Shaughnessy and her team, for all the happy memories you’re dedicating to your community’s children.
You can check out this video for more on Green Lantern Lunches: