Each day news around the coronavirus involves closures. This includes schools nationwide.
As schools are shutting their doors to prevent children from catching and spreading the coronavirus, this means many kids will go without food.
But American Legion Auxiliary Unit 192 in Canton, Kan., is doing what it can to provide lunches to children in their district.
Since Wednesday, March 15, Unit 192 members have offered a sack lunch to children ages 1 to 18 (or 12th grade) filled with a sandwich, fruit, vegetable, snack and water. Auxiliary members are at Post 192 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. to hand out the lunches, and will continue to do so until schools re-open to provide meals.
“We seek to be proactive and not wait and listen as folks wonder how to provide for their children,” said Unit 192 President Debbie Evans.
Money to purchase food to fill the lunch sack have come from individual donations and proceeds from the post’s recent baked potato bar dinner.
Evans' quick action to support the children in her community is partly a result of what she heard immediate Past Department of Kansas Commander Dan Wiley say during a recent American Legion birthday dinner.
Evans said Wiley asked two questions that “struck a chord” with her: When people in your town think of The American Legion, what do they think? If your American Legion closed, would your community miss it?
“I want my community to see us as a vital part of it,” Evans said. “And see us as a resource and an asset by what we do and how we serve.”
Weimer-Widder American Legion Post 549 in Beach City, Ohio, has opened its post home to the local school district to use as a lunch distribution service for children who need meals because of closures. The district is using the post’s parking lot to distribute the meals via a bus.
“We do emergency preparations in case of local disasters. We’ll close our post and offer it to the community for situations like this,” said Larry Glasgow, 10th District 1 first vice commander and past commander of Post 549.
If your American Legion Family is supporting community needs during this time of uncertainty, please share on www.legiontown.org. And stay informed on messages from American Legion National Commander James W. "Bill" Oxford and other news stories regarding the coronavirus at www.legion.org/coronavirus.