Great-Grandmother Ensures Hundreds of Kids a Day Eat Lunch and Now She Wants to Do More
Lifestyle| | By Brian Delpozo
A Washington State great-grandmother has expanded her love beyond her family to over 300 others.
74-year-old Phyllis Shaughnessy was bothered by the fact that students who receive free school lunches during the academic year were left with nothing during the summer. The part-time substitute teacher decided to do something about the issue and last year launched the Green Lantern Lunches Program.
With the help of volunteers, Shaughnessy prepares, packs, and delivers 300 lunches a day to families in the area. According to the project’s GoFundMe page, Green Lantern delivered over 10,000 lunches in it’s initial year. That number jumped up to 16,919 this past summer.
Shaughnessy spoke about the program on GoFundMe, discussing her most memorable moments:
“Probably some of the most memorable moments are when the Moms tell me what a huge difference the lunches make in their monthly budget. And how it saves them from running out before the end of the month. They are very grateful and the extra we give families on Friday’s for the weekend is also greatly appreciated. As for the kids, no matter how old I get, I will always remember them come running to the car yelling “It’s the lunch lady, the lunch lady, yeah!!!!” They are full of smiles and can’t wait to get into the bags to see what came today. It is something else to see a little guy, about 3 years old, trying to carry all 6 lunches going to his house. I have felt more emotion delivering these lunches than in all the years of working food banks. There is something special about meeting a child at his door and giving him a smile, a lunch and a loving touch. It makes sense in this world of turmoil.”
Green Lantern Lunches, which is launching a “backpack” program coinciding with the start of the school year that will send food home with kids over weekends, sits at over $12,400 dollars on GoFundMe as of press time. The organization’s overall goal is $25,000.