SCARBOROUGH — The Scarborough Board of Education approved $12,000 worth of donations that have been made to support the district’s nutritional programs during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Between March 17 and May 3, various community members donated over $10,000 to the school district’s Backpack Program, and over $1,000 was donated to the school’s nutrition program, according to a memo from Kate Bolton, director of business and finance at Scarborough Schools.

The Backpack Program, a partnership between Scarborough Public Schools and the Good Shepherd Food Bank, provides students meals when school is not in session, usually weekends and holidays, according to the Good Shepherd Food Bank’s website.

Board of Education Chair Leanne Kazilionis read Bolton’s statement, which included a complete list of donors, and both can be found on the Scarborough School’s Facebook page, @scarbmeschools.

“Kelly Murphy earns a special shout-out for organizing a social media fundraising drive on top of her usual efforts to collect food and funds,” Bolton said. “Project Grace and Kiwanis are as always critical partners at the forefront of this work. Maria Connolly brought in a donation of personal products collected from her large friend group. Local businesses including Hannaford and The Holy Donut have contributed food, and neighbors at Wayside Food Pantry in Portland and the South Portland Food Cupboard have reached out to share food and support.”

Alicia Giftos, a member of the school board, thanked the donors for their generosity.

Members of the public who are interested in donating can visit scarboroughschools.org/central-office/nutrition-program, where information about donating food items is also located, Giftos said.

“This is going to be a potentially ongoing problem for our community, and I’m sure we’re going to need replenishment of those funds,” she said.

Hillory Durgin, another board member, also thanked the previous donors.

“It’s kind of humbling to see how our community can come together and make this kind of donation for the people who may need it,” she said.

Bolton’s statement also acknowledges staff who have helped with deliveries and supplies.

“In the midst of much turmoil and distress, it is especially heartwarming to recognize all the work that our community is doing to pull together in support of families in need,” she said. “I appreciate the opportunity to publicly recognize these local heroes through the Board.”

“It was overwhelming to look at that list and it’s inspiring how generous folks are during this time,” Kazilionis said. “Thank you so, so much.”

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