Fort Campbell, KY – Supporting Army Families maintains the resilience and mission readiness of the force and remains vital during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. While on-post schools remain closed, the staff of the Fort Campbell Child Nutrition Program have established a drive-through grab-and-go free meal service for children up the age of 18.
Children do not have to be students at Department of Defense Education Activity-Fort Campbell schools to participate. The program provides breakfast and lunch meals.
“We are trying to make their meals last a little bit longer,” said Elaine Dawkins, School Meals Program food service director. “By providing breakfast and lunch for each day, parents only to have worry about dinner meals for their kids. It will help them out by stretching food and grocery financial costs.”
Pick-ups are 11:00am-1:00pm Monday-Friday at the Barkley Elementary School car-rider zone, 177 Gorgas Avenue; and at the bus-loading zone at Barsanti Elementary School, 7409 McAuliffe Way.
To pick up meals, parents pull their cars up and tell workers how many meals they need – children do not have to be present. Lunch for that day and breakfast for the next day are provided at each pick up.
“We’ve just been providing sandwiches and fruit at first to see what we can do safely,” Dawkins said. “When we start getting into hot meals we have to worry about food-safe temperatures. We still have to meet the proper nutrition components. They have a vegetable, a grain, the protein, a milk and in the morning they have a juice.”
“It may be hard to do long-term, because I’m limited on employees,” she said. “My employees have kids at home, or they cannot work because they, or someone in their Family, have a compromised immune system. Some of my employees are older and scared about getting sick. My workers get here at 6:30am, and leave here at 3:00pm.”
Between the two locations, Dawkins said they have been providing anywhere from 2,000 to 3,000 meals each day. The funding for the meals is provided through the state of Kentucky.
“I would say we are providing more meals now, because I think there is more of a need,” she said.
To provide the proper spacing for social distancing, workers and volunteers are spread out in the cafeteria so everyone can work at a safe distance apart, Dawkins said.
“It takes everyone in the community involved,” she said. “We need the community to come in and play a part. My workers are wonderful, they are dedicated and they are positive. When you see my workers, be nice to them, because it’s a lot of work.”
Emily LaForme, Fort Campbell Courier reporter, contributed to this press release. For more Fort Campbell good news stories, visit https://fortcampbell-courier.com/.