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Thriving Together: Supporting Our Community

April 14

Since the closure of Madison Metropolitan School District in March, a group of staff members has taken our mission on the road. Starting April 13, these employees have delivered 136 meals to 45 families each day.

Each week has brought with it new challenges, new partnerships, and new families in need. “We do what we do because we love what we do,” says Monique Bryson, community outreach director.

The daily schedule is organized for maximum efficiency, safety, and to deliver as much food and goods as we can to those who need them.

Here’s a glimpse into the daily schedule that allows nearly 2,000 meals to be delivered to Madison families.

9 a.m.: Call the Badger Prairie Needs Network, a food pantry and donation center, and see what supplemental food they have available. This provides additional supplies and support beyond what Madison Metropolitan School District can provide.

9:30 a.m.: Arrive at Badger Prairie Needs Network, pack and stack all food to be distributed to families. This might include fresh veggies, juice, trail mix, and pasta.

10 a.m.: Hop back into the shuttle, and drive back to Elver Park Neighborhood Center — Wisconsin Youth Company’s home base.

11 a.m.: Delivery staff arrive at Elver Park Neighborhood Center, wash hands, put on protective gear, and decide on roles for the day. The team has three designated roles to ensure quick, effective, and safe delivery:

  • Driver follows a delivery route to distribute goods to those in need
  • Runner takes bags of food from the delivery shuttle to the family’s doorstep
  • Notifier calls families to let them know when the shuttle has arrived with its delivery

11:15 a.m.: Drive to Madison Memorial High School, secondary food pick-up location.

11:30 a.m.: Say hi to other food delivery teams at the high school, and pack bags with breakfast and lunch meals for each family. Add donated goods from the Badger Prairie Needs Network to supplement meals.

12 p.m.: Start out on the delivery route to distribute food to families.

12:10 p.m.: Arrive at the first stop, text or call the family to let them know the shuttle is outside, take a bag of food to the family’s doorstep. Head to the next stop.

Along the way: Wave to children as we deliver bags of food, join them in socially distant happy dances, and give air hugs.

1 p.m.: Take information on additional families in need and add them to the delivery route.

2 p.m.: Finish deliveries. Return to Elver Park Neighborhood Center, sanitize the shuttle and ourselves, and say goodbye to each other until tomorrow when we do it all over again.

To continue to meet the needs of a growing number of families, we have reached out to our community partners to help us purchase additional resources and goods. We are hearing from some families that they need other household goods and essentials such as paper towels, disinfectant cleaners, and dish soap.

If you are able to provide financial support toward supplies for a family in need, please donate today. We are better together.