Call to Action: Feeding a Community Need
The Highlands Partnership Network, in coordination with Highlands School District, coordinated five additional locations for school lunches to be picked up in the Highlands School District area when schools shut down due to the COVID-19 outbreak in March 2020.
HPN volunteers worked with the HSD Food Services Dept. to pick up school lunches and distribute in five community locations from March to June so families without transportation, multiple children, illnesses or who had children staying home while parents worked were able to continue receiving school lunches and breakfast items despite the shut-down.
The Partnership distributed food at these five locations:
First Avenue and Bridge Street at The Geg Blythe Friendship Garden, Tarentum
West 6th Avenue Playground, West Tarentum
Salvation Army, 917 Brackenridge Avenue, Brackenridge
Natrona Community Park, River Road, Natrona
Village Green Apartments, 240 Village Green Drive, Natrona Heights
Highlands School District students in grades Pre-K to 12 received five bagged lunches for the week. Packed lunch bags included non-perishable breakfast items, lunch items, beverages and extra school supplies or nutritional items from the Partnership members.
Volunteers practiced under suggested guidelines during distribution, including maintaining distance between volunteers and recipients, sanitizing tables and changing gloves.
By meeting the families in their neighborhoods during a time of great distress and need, the Partnership volunteers were able to connect those in need of food or other services to local services, Allegheny County resources and other assistance, as needed.
Highlands School District offered three locations for a week of lunch to-go pick up for students throughout the school closure:
Highlands High School entrance door #23 nearest the student parking lot
Highlands Elementary School entrance door #22 nearest the cafeteria
The Hayden Center at Sheldon Park
Highlands Partnership Network is dedicated to "Building Connections. Growing Community" in the Tarentum, Harrison, Brackenridge, and Fawn communities of Allegheny County. Its membership includes local nonprofit organizations, faith-based organizations and representatives from local municipalities and elected officials' offices. Its mission is to build a sense of belonging and pride throughout the Highlands Community by connecting people to resources that will impact and transform their lives. As each neighbor is strengthened, the roots of the community grow deeper. The Network welcomes new members. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for membership information.