“Operation Summer Snacks” Returns to Windham Church with Another Lofty Goal for Year #8

WINDHAM---For the eighth year, parishioners and community members in Windham will help local children in need during “Operation Summer Snacks,” an Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church initiative that has grown from a program with an ultimate goal of collecting 1,000 snacks to one that now regularly corrals nearly 6,000.

“The food collected from this drive helps support children that receive supplemental food during the school year; however, during the summer they aren't at school and able to receive it,” said Jill Russell-Morey, who helped start the initiative in 2016. “It's crucial we continue to support our neighbors and help fight food insecurity in the community.”

Our Lady of Perpetual Help works with the Windham Food Pantry to deliver the donations to those in need. Throughout the summer, thanks to community generosity, each child receives various individual-sized snacks like raisins, crackers, fruit cups, granola bars, and other items. Snack donations can be dropped off in the narthex outside of the parish hall entrance at the church (919 Roosevelt Trail in Windham). Organizers are also able to pick up donations at houses or other specified locations. To make arrangements for a pickup, contact Jill at [email protected].

“We even have donations shipped to us directly from Walmart and Sam’s Club,” said Jill. “We also accept cash, checks, and Venmo if people would rather provide a monetary donation that we can use to shop for the children.”

Individually wrapped donations that are requested this year are:

  • applesauce pouches/containers
  • cracker packs (Nabisco, Ritz, Goldfish, etc.)
  • fruit cups (Dole, etc.)
  • raisin boxes/packets
  • granola bars
  • pretzel packs
  • juice pouches/boxes (Minute Maid, Capri Sun, etc.)
  • cereal bars, breakfast biscuits (Nutri-Grain, Belvita, etc.)
  • non-perishable pudding cups (Hunt's, etc.)
  • popcorn/snack puffs (SkinnyPop, Smartfood, Pirate's Booty, etc.)
  • gluten free and/or nut free snacks for those with food sensitivities

“Operation Summer Snacks” has become so successful that the assistance has extended beyond the youth.

“Due to the amazing response, our efforts even helped support those receiving food for the Senior Drive-ins that are held twice monthly,” said Jill. “Not only have we helped to feed our youngest friends in town but also our older!”  

The goal this year is to collect 5,600 snacks.

“I know the program will be successful again,” said Jill. “We have such a loving, caring parish community. We are so grateful for the past support in donations and prayers.”

For more information about “Operation Summer Snacks,” please call 207-892-8288.