The CEO of Chobani has drawn attention to a growing national crisis when he donated nearly $50,000 in order to pay off student lunch debts in Rhode Island.
In 2019, the Warwick Public Schools were facing $77,000 in outstanding lunch fees, and Chobani did a very kind thing.
According to the School Nutrition Association, 75% of school districts across the United States had accumulated unpaid meal debt by the end of the 2017 school year. Many of the students with these outstanding debts were unable to avail of the hot lunches and often go home hungry after school.
Shawn Bumgardner, a concerned father, couldn’t believe it when he heard some of the students at his daughter’s middle school weren’t receiving the same lunches as the rest of the students.
Shawn also learned about one student in particular, who attended Cudahy Middle School in Wisconsin, who was selflessly sharing her lunch with a student whose negative balance prevented them from accessing a hot lunch.
According to a report by the Journal Sentinel, “Among the suburban Milwaukee school districts, Cudahy has one of the highest percentages of students, 59%, who are enrolled in the government-sponsored free- and reduced-price school lunch program.”
“There’s no child that should go to school and be hungry,” Shawn stated.
As a result, Shawn decided to put his words into actions, and because of this, his daughter couldn’t be prouder of him.