Noble Network of Charter Schools found out on a Friday that school would be closed the next Monday for the foreseeable future. Monica Bromber-Karis, Director of Dining Services, spent the whole weekend brainstorming, planning, and implementing food distribution strategies for Noble Schools. Sure enough, meal kits were ready to go the very first Monday school was closed.
Noble sent out newsletters and used community connections, social media, and their website to promote the free meal program. Monica even looked for nearby businesses on Google Maps and reached out to see if they would help spread the word. Once word got out, the number of meals served started to increase rapidly, resulting in 235,000 meals being given out to date through the federal government’s school food program!. Monica said, “I immediately heard from our food service staff about how appreciative and thankful people are.” And with the variety of healthy, kid-friendly meals, it is no surprise that Noble has seen such success. By working to increase the variety of foods on the menu, kids now receive fan-favorites like spicy chicken sandwiches and roast beef subs in their meal kits.
What has been key to Noble’s success? Monica has always focused on making sure their food service staff feel safe and supported. Staff were provided with PPE and food pickup stations were set up in a manner that allows for no-contact pickup. Monica said, “Our food service staff from Chartwells and Aramark are members of our Noble family and they are doing work that is helping the most vulnerable members of our communities when it is needed the most. In turn we wanted to do all we can to show them our love, appreciation, and support.”
Monica and her team are continuing to grow Noble’s distribution. Ellen Moiani, Manager of Government and Community Affairs, helped facilitate a partnership with a community organization serving kids that needed some help feeding them. Now, Noble delivers meal kits directly to 3 community organizations, and Monica hopes the number of organizations her team serves will continue to grow.