by Mandi Favreau and Barbara Bonnell
Whether during the school year, during the summer, or during unprecedented times like these, our RSU #18 nutrition staff members come to work every day to do their job – no questions asked. During the early April power outage, this dedicated group of workers came in and made sandwiches by phone lights so no child would go hungry!
“The staff works hard to prepare quality meals that are satisfying to the students,” said nutrition director, Barbara Bonnell. “It’s a difficult task to keep the meals interesting for the children.“
Hand packing roughly 1,500 meals a day is also quite an undertaking, and it all begins at 5:30 in the morning. Ordering, prepping all the veggies, assembling and wrapping sandwiches, not to mention keeping everything organized, is a huge amount of work. Everything needs to be done quickly and efficiently to have all meals ready by 9 a.m., so they can be delivered to individual homes and open sites around the district. Once everything is prepared, it is packed into lunch bags and boxed to be shipped out with our equally dedicated bus drivers.
As soon as the meals are out the door, the prep for the next day begins. Food is ordered and received, bags are opened, items are defrosted, veggies and fruits are cut and packaged, cookies are baked and packaged to be ready for the next day. Fridays are the toughest as they prepare all the meals to send to each family for the weekend. No rest for the weary, once those meals leave the kitchen, they start right in again preparing for Monday.
“The RSU #18 nutrition staff can only be described as superheroes,” said Bonnell. “They are a championship team! We are extremely proud of them and what they do!”
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