SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Whatever affects one directly, affects us all indirectly – and that’s the message from Thanksgiving Point as communities pull together on this Martin Luther King Jr. Day of service to bring awareness to an unfortunate hunger crisis in Utah’s schools.
On Monday, Thanksgiving Point put a goal out of assembling 4,000 snack packs along with the help of parents and kids here today assembling bags of food to distribute to students in the Granite School District.
“We just like the idea of the day of service and giving some quick service time,” says one parent ABC4 spoke with while assembling snack kits along with her son.
On the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of service, for many a day off work and school, but for some families, they’re taking a few minutes before enjoying time at Thanksgiving Point’s Museum of Natural Curiosity to help feed hungry students.
The initiative invites people from the community to help assemble snack packs for students in the Granite School District. Amberlyn Johnson, the Signature Experience Manager at Thanksgiving Point, says as a former teacher and seeing the need firsthand in some of her own students inspired her to help spearhead the project.
“Knowing there are so many ways we can help here we’re such a big foundation that’s focused on education and children,” says Johnson.
Granite School District officials say roughly 65% of their student population just simply aren’t getting enough to eat on a daily basis.
“For many of them, they are food insecure, which means they don’t always know where their next meal is coming from,” says Kim Oborn of the Granite Education Foundation.
The snack kits are with what officials call a “pick me up” for the Granite School District’s pantry program to distribute to students in need.
The Granite School District says food insecurity is an issue in many of their schools from elementary to high school.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2022 marks the 27th year as a day of service to honor the life and legacy of what the iconic leader stood for in preaching love for one another regardless of race, gender, or background.
Amberlyn Johnson says “in preparation for this year’s event, I read through his famous ‘I Have A Dream’ speech and I love how it talked about children in there.”
Johnson adds that she feels this type of service is something Dr. King would have supported in ensuring children have the proper nourishment needed to thrive in class.
Thanksgiving Point says this while they started the event in 2020 pre-COVID, festivities in 2021 were halted for precautionary measures. But they say plan to hold it annually on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.