A few weeks ago, 250 AmeriCorps members gathered in Helena for Montana's 8th Annual Serve Symposium. This is a three-day event where the members perform service projects, attend workshops, listen to guest speakers, and execute a disaster simulation to top off the week. Although the week was long and action-packed, I found it to be quite valuable. My workshops ranged in topic, including concepts like community organizing, creating a collective impact, working in the non-profit sector, the psychological stages of the AmeriCorps service experience, and measuring poverty. I felt particularly inspired by my peers.
March 27, 2017
I am hosting a Cooking Matters at the Store tour during the first part of April​ and a family dinner on the 27th that month. The dinner project, an effort to reconnect families around the dinner table, inspires meaningful interaction​, repairing broken down family structures. The Cooking Matters at the Store tour teaches struggling parents to make healthy choices in the store and get the most out of their shopping dollars. Exciting and fulfilling, both projects have the potential to effect lasting, positive​ change.
March 27, 2017
Over the last couple weeks, I have focused on promoting summer meal programs as well as coming up with ideas and activities for the summer meal event kickoff. I have also been focused on how I can increase participation for the school breakfast program.
March 27, 2017
Working with Jenn, the director of the Afterschool Program at W. F. Morrison (the elementary school in Troy) we secured a $2000 grant from No Kid Hungry and a five year reimbursement award from CACFP (the Child & Adult Care Food Program) to implement the transition from an afterschool snack to a complete meal.
February 06, 2017
An overwhelming number of respondents spoke about their wish for ‘neighborliness,’ and to feel a stronger connection to their peers and fellow community members. This was striking to me, and gave me motivation in my pursuits, to not only fulfill my objectives of food access, nutrition education, and community awareness, but also to foster sociability and friendliness throughout my service.
February 06, 2017
The recent breakdown of my truck forced me to walk in freezing temperatures on icy streets. Meeting the challenges of my service this year necessitates mobility - my plan to get a Breakfast After the Bell program established in Libby depends on it!
December 28, 2016
Broadwater students are also getting more involved in the well-being of their school communities by creating promotional posters for healthier options, making announcements to highlight fruits and vegetables, and being nutritional role models. We hope this process will align with the philosophy that social change starts on a ground level, and peer-to-peer advocacy is the most effective way to make the healthiest option the most popular.
December 23, 2016
After taking a moment to build up his courage, he began to speak. He told me that he and his family had been going from church to church in an effort to get enough food to make it through the month, and with tears welling up in his eyes he added, "This dinner was such a blessing to us. Will you be doing this again soon?" At that moment I realized the real significance of what No Kid Hungry is doing here in this little community and the importance of keeping it going!
December 06, 2016
Although starting traditional breakfast is a huge triumph, it’s not always the most effective approach to reach the maximum number of students. By offering an alternative breakfast model, we hope to increase breakfast participation.
November 28, 2016