Lately, I’ve noticed food disappearing from my cupboards. A box of cereal here, some apples and cans of soup there. An entire loaf of bread and jar of peanut butter was what really caught my attention and made me wonder.
I watched for a couple of days and realized that Janey was sneaking food into her backpack right before we left for school, and by the end of the day, it was gone.
When I asked her about it, she told me, huge tears in her eyes, which a little boy in her class told her he hated the weekends because he didn’t have anything to eat on the weekends when he wasn’t provided with school breakfast and lunch. So she was sneaking food into his backpack during the school day, so he and his little brother would have something to eat. She was doing it on the sly because she didn’t want to embarrass him or get him into any trouble.
This really struck me because we live in a fairly affluent neighborhood, and while I’m not naive enough to think that food insecurity doesn’t exist everywhere, I was really surprised to find out that this little boy and his family were struggling in this way.
I’m putting this here just to remind everyone (myself include) that we never know how someone is struggling, that needs are not always obvious.
Reaching out in the smallest way can make a huge difference.
In case you are wondering, I’ve passed this info along anonymously to the school, and they’ve assured me that they will help this family access resources to help them through their hard times.
But still, I’ve been buying a few extra boxes of cereal and cans soup and putting them in a 6-year-old accessible location. I’ve noticed that they are still disappearing.
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