By Laurin Stroud
A Gibson County High School senior hosted a food drive last week to help get needed resources to her friends and other community members.
Kaci Merrick said she realized the effect that COVID-19 was having on her community.
“Some of my friends rely on food that is distributed from the school, and the schools were running low,” Merrick said. “That is when I decided I needed to do something to help.”
Merrick came up with the idea on a Friday, passed out flyers around town, and posted the information on her social media. The idea was a non-contact drop off or pick up.
“We asked people in the community to sit their donations in a marked bag in their driveway,” Merrick said. “We drove down every street in each town and picked up bags. We even had people make monetary donations, and we did the shopping for them.”
Monday, April 20, they picked up donations in Kenton, Tuesday was Rutherford’s day, and Wednesday was Dyer’s day.
“We have collected close to $1,000 worth of food,” Merrick said Wednesday. “This was more than I ever expected.”
The donations were given to elementary schools in the respective towns to help with the backpack program, which sends snacks and easy to prepare meals for the weekends home with children living in food insecure homes. Since schools have been shut down since March, volunteers have been taking the food to these students’ homes each Friday.
“During this drive, we had someone from Dyer reach out to us and ask for personal care items,” Merrick said. “I am hoping to get together goody bags of these items and donate to the Dyer Cumberland Presbyterian Church for their ministry. I know I want to do this food drive again, but I’m not sure when.”
If you would like to donate to Kaci’s food drive, you can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 731-446-8364. She is still taking donations.