PowerSnack Comes to Hubbard-Radcliffe Schools
“When students come to school hungry, their behavior is visibly worse,” said Hubbard-Radcliffe Elementary Health Coordinator, LouAnn Busch. “It’s impossible for students to focus and learn when their stomachs are growling.”
For several years now, we’ve met up with LouAnn right before Thanksgiving to deliver Power Snacks—deli ham and whole-wheat bread coupons for at-risk kids. Our visits with LouAnn never leave us any less fulfilled or confident in the love and support students in Radcliffe receive. Her passion for helping students succeed is remarkable and working with people like LouAnn is one of our favorite parts of Power Snack deliveries.
“I’ve been here so many years I now see students of former students in my office,” she chuckled. “I know these families; I know these children and I know their needs. It puts me in a very difficult position because I see them come to school hungry or dirty and it absolutely kills me. How can I not help them? I am just so glad I can give them access to free food like this.”
Now in its seventh year, Power Snack provides coupons for deli ham and whole wheat bread to 22,751 students across Iowa. Together, the ham and bread make a nutritious Power Snack full of protein, iron, and zinc—nutrients imperative in both the physical and cognitive development of children.
New in 2019, schools will also receive pork sticks to help students in emergency hunger situations.
“I love that this program allows us to help our students even more,” said LouAnn. “We introduced Power Snack coupons students several years ago and they’ve just been a hit. Students love being able to go into the store and get fresh bread and fresh meat. Those are not things they’re used to having at home and I think it’s been really great for them. This program is making a huge difference because the reality is that kids can’t focus when they’re starving. They need to eat.”
In addition to Power Snack, Hubbard-Radcliffe has a food pantry to further assist students and their families. The county also has several pantries and organizations to assist families.
“Local food-assistance programs are very important because a lot of students simply do not have healthy food at home, they just eat junk food,” continued LouAnn. “We keep the coupons in our food pantry and will now have the pork sticks to offer, too. Anything we can do to help struggling families put food on the table is a blessing.”
In total, 165 students in Hardin County will receive Power Snack coupons and pork sticks. Each student will receive ham and whole-wheat bread coupons four times throughout the school year—a contribution valued at $5,280 and enough resources to make 7,920 ham sandwiches.