ALICE, Texas — Alice ISD was selected for a grant to help teachers and staff fund their ideas of helping students in need.
The district was informed of an opportunity to apply for the State Farm Teacher Assist grant in December. The money could be used to provide support for students during the COVID-19 pandemic, something that Alice ISD social worker coordinator Moises Maldonado said is needed.
“We know that the students cannot, we can't expect them to excel in the classroom if they are hungry, if they’ve gone the weekend without having sufficient food," Maldonado said.
Out of 200 submissions in Texas, Alice was one of the 40 districts selected for the $2,500 grant. Alice State Farm agent Raul Ramirez said when he received the email that Alice ISD was chosen, he was excited.
“Because of the number, the chances, you have $100,000 out there and only a select few would be chosen," Ramirez said. "It was fantastic."
Maldonado said the lack of nutritional foods is an issue nationally and locally.
So, how does the district plan to help the students' nutritional needs? They are partnering with the Coastal Bend Food Bank where 100% of the grant will be used to supply about 984 food backpacks that will be filled with non-perishable foods.
“The Coastal Bend Food Bank even donated additional food backpacks to this project so we are really thankful for that,” said Maldonado.
The backpacks are planned to be distributed at the end of March, Maldonado said. They will be available for students in the district that need food assistance.
“We are projected to have these backpacks for the rest of this school year and possibly even continuing into summer school and maybe even in the beginning of the next school year as well,” said Maldonado.
For more information on how to request assistance for a food backpack visit the Alice ISD website here.
To help donate food to the Coastal Bend Food bank visit their website here.