Love Joy Elementary Received Operation Christmas Meal Love

posted on Tuesday, December 8, 2020

On to Lovejoy Elementary to deliver 10 cases of pork loins for local students and families in-need.

“Many of our families are forced to pay for bills or food, so when we can provide the most basic items—bread, milk and eggs—it’s a tremendous relief for them,” said Sia Turner of LoveJoy Elementary in Des Moines. “Quality meat is never an option, unless perhaps it’s canned, so these pork loins are just going to mean the world to them.”

This has been an extremely trying year for schools, especially those in larger metro areas that have adapted remote learning methods, and schools like LoveJoy have seen an increased need for daily meals, especially on the weekends. Students can come to the school for meals and teachers also deliver to nearby apartments.

“At the beginning of COVID we were forced to close the food pantry and the moment we opened, families came rushing back because their needs, even for the most basic of items, were so great,” explained Sia. “This has been a tough year for so many, between layoffs and unemployment, so we are grateful to continue our weekly meal program and have our pantry open again to serve our families.”

Thanks to a grant from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, LoveJoy now has cold storage space to store perishable items, like the 120 pork loins received today. According to Sia, 60 pork loins will go directly into the hands of families today and the remaining 60 will go into the food pantry for distribution next week.

“It’s not always easy to ask for help, but school is a place of comfort and trust for so many of our students and families so when we know that they need help, it’s easier for them to accept it from us rather than going out to a pantry and applying for assistance,” continued Sia. “This is just another great resource to keep our kids fed and we’re so grateful for this large donation today.”