Today, we want to shed light on an important issue that affects the students of Sabal Palm Elementary School, located in the 32304 zip code, the poorest in the state of Florida. It's a statistic that demands our attention and concern: 96% of the student population at Sabal Palm lives below the poverty line. This reality underscores the critical need for our support.
Amidst the challenges faced by these children, there is a beacon of hope at Sabal Palm: the Hope 24/7 Food Locker. This initiative has been instrumental in providing assistance to the students and the community at large. The food locker, conveniently located outside the school's fence, offers 20 compartments, each containing a 30-pound box of food, providing up to 25 meals. What sets it apart is the ability of each compartment to function as a refrigerator or a freezer. This means that the community members who access the locker can receive fresh produce, frozen vegetables, fruits, and meats—essential resources in a neighborhood classified as a food desert.
The success of the Hope 24/7 Food Locker relies on the support of generous individuals like you. This past year, A FULL SUMMER helped fund the traditional food pantry and we also covered the monitoring fee for the Hope 24/7 Food Locker- and it's our goal to do it again! Our annual contribution of $4,095 ensures that the lockers maintain safe temperature ranges and covers any necessary servicing.
Thanks to the collective efforts of compassionate souls like yourselves, members of the Sabal Palm community have access to nutritious food—food that we would gladly provide for our own families. Your commitment to alleviating childhood hunger is a testament to your compassion and empathy. Together, we can continue to make a difference and ensure that no child goes hungry.
Thank you for standing with us in support of the remarkable children who face the daily struggle of hunger. Your contribution brings hope and nourishment, laying the foundation for a brighter future.
Dear A FULL SUMMER Friends,
One month from TODAY we will have our 2023 A FULL SUMMER Snack Pack! Thank you ALL for your support! We are a group of people who saw a need to help local food insecure children and we're doing something about it!
We had such an overwhelming response to our Snack Pack, that we increased our team numbers from 20 to 25! That means we'll pack 6,250 snacks instead of 5,000 this year!
That also means our fundraising goal is now $34,595. Here's how our funds are allocated:
In the two months since we have started fundraising, we have raised $25,989.52! That's wonderful!!! Thank YOU!! We know we can reach our goal!
To those of you who have donated, THANK YOU! If you'd like to help and haven't, please consider a donation through our PayPal page or by mailing a check made payable to A FULL SUMMER to St. John's Episcopal Church, 211 North Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301, Attn: A FULL SUMMER. And please like us on Facebook and share this email and our website with you friends, coworkers, and family.
Here's a story about Mashayla West and Claudia Williams at Astoria Park Elementary's pantry so you can see what your donation supports: Astoria Park Elementary School's Pantry.
A Full Summer and A Full Heart
Ms. Mashayla West is a 5th grade teacher at Astoria Park with a big heart. Ms. Claudia Williams is Astoria Park’s Building Supervisor and she has a big heart, too. They know that before children can learn they have to be fed. And they want students to eat the same quality of food that they feed their own families. Food that not only feeds the body, but feeds the soul. The kind of food that says, “I love you.”
We want to tell you about these two incredible women and what inspires them to feed children at Astoria Park Elementary School.
Several years ago, Ms. West had a little girl in her class that was being referred to Exceptional Student Education (ESE). Normally she forwards an ESE recommendation form to the administration without reading it, but this time she decided to take a look at it. When Ms. West got to the section that contained the child’s address information, she noticed it said, “Homeless.”
From that day forward, Ms. West ordered extra food for lunch and shared it with this child. They would eat a meal together and talk every day. Ms. West also remembers cleaning out some old student notes from the days when she taught high school. She noticed that a lot of the notes were thanking her for sharing her food. One note said, “Dear Mrs. West, Thank you for sharing your hot wings with me. I wasn’t being greedy, I was hungry.” Ms. West said that God reminded her that she’s been feeding her students her entire career. She felt called to feed all of the hungry children at Astoria Park. So, she contacted someone who she knew would help start a food pantry, Astoria Park’s Building Supervisor, Claudia Williams.
Ms. Williams said she had been wanting to start a pantry for a while and when Ms. West contacted her, she knew she had a partner that shared her vision. In addition to being the school’s building supervisor, Ms. Williams is also a foster parent. She knows firsthand that a lot of the students at school are hungry and in need of clothing or shoes. She was already supplying Astoria Park’s Clothes Closet with items. Ms. Williams recalled the time she saw a child whose shoe sole was detached. She quietly took him aside, led him to the school’s Clothes Closet, and allowed him to pick out two brand new pairs of shoes, one to put on immediately and the other to take home in his book bag.
Ms. West and Ms. Williams wanted to provide nutritious food to Astoria Park’s children. They envisioned having meat, vegetables, and fruits in addition to the traditional canned food and cereals. So, they contacted Second Harvest of the Big Bend. Second Harvest knew they’d need a refrigerator/freezer.
That’s when A FULL SUMMER was contacted. We furnished a refrigerator/freezer that allowed Astoria Park’s pantry to receive the variety of food Ms. West and Ms. Williams wanted for their kids. This coming school year, A FULL SUMMER will also donate $2,000 to help Astoria Park purchase food from Second Harvest for their pantry.
No child should go hungry. Ms. West and Ms. Williams work extra hours at no additional pay to help ensure no child at Astoria Park goes hungry. When you donate to A FULL SUMMER, you are helping Ms. West, Ms. Williams, and countless other teachers, building supervisors, and genuinely good people help feed our children.
If you haven’t already, please consider a donation to A FULL SUMMER. Our Snack Pack helps feed kids during the summer months, but our sponsored food pantries feed kids all year long. Donations may be made above, or you may mail a check made payable to A FULL SUMMER to:
St. John’s Episcopal Church
Attn: A FULL SUMMER.
211 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, FL 32301
PS- the day that Second Harvest notified Ms. West that Astoria Park’s pantry had been approved was the last day the homeless little girl was in her class. This little girl still spends holidays with Ms. West, and she believes that God used this little girl to inspire her to feed children. Angels come in many forms….
Laurye and AFS
March 23rd, 2023
Get ready, Tallahassee, registration for the 2023 A FULL SUMMER Snack Pack will be opening soon!
A FULL SUMMER Snack Pack will take place in the Godby High School cafeteria located at 1717 W. Tharpe Street. For two hours, we’ll pack
snacks for Second Harvest to deliver to agencies that serve food insecure children during the summer. Last year, A FULL SUMMER volunteers packed 5,000 snacks that were used at agencies such as Capital City Youth Services, Big Brother Big Sisters, Big Bend Homeless Coalition, and
Good News Ministries. So, let’s do it again!
Come back to this page in the coming weeks to register to pack snacks on June 3rd and feel free to donate anytime…like right now, if you feel called. Just click the button at the top of this page!
Volunteers may sign up individually or businesses, churches, community groups, family, and groups of friends can form a team and pack together! In addition to packing snacks, funds raised by A FULL SUMMER supporters sponsor eight Leon County School food pantries, underwrite the monitoring fees for the Hope 24/7 Food Locker located at Sabal Palm Elementary School, and furnish appliances to school pantries so that they may offer fresh or frozen meat, fruits, and vegetables to the children they serve. This year, with your help, we hope to sponsor a ninth school pantry at Astoria Park Elementary! Our fundraising goal this year is $32,095 to cover the snacks, 8 pantries, the Hope 24/7 monitoring fee, AND a 9th pantry at Astoria Park Elementary.
We ask each volunteer working at the event to donate a minimum of $50 to cover the cost of the snacks we pack. Teams of 10 cost $500. And we appreciate donations of any amount to cover all the ways we help food insecure children.
Thank YOU! Together we are doing something to help food insecure children in our community.