Students from Horne Elementary School’s student council greet Kenny Thompson at the school on Monday morning. Thompson came to the campus on behalf of nonprofit Feed the Future Forward, paying off all 158 outstanding lunch accounts totaling $965.67.
Feb. 24, 2014——“Lunch angel” Kenny Thompson of nonprofit Feed the Future Forward came to Horne Elementary School on Monday to pay off all 158 past-due lunch accounts totaling $965.67.
Donations made on the Feed the Future Forward website have allowed Thompson to piggyback off his initial donation of $465 to Spring Branch ISD’s Valley Oaks Elementary School on Feb. 3. He has since paid off negative lunch balances at:
five schools in Spring Branch ISD on Feb. 10 ($3,338);
Aldine ISD’s Aldine Middle School on Feb. 14 ($954.02);
Houston ISD’s Sinclair Elementary School on Feb. 17 ($147.10); and
Katy ISD’s Sundown Elementary School on Feb. 17 ($627.91).
When combined with the donation to Horne on Monday, the combined effort from Feed the Future is $6,497.70 benefiting approximately 900 students in greater Houston in less than a month.
“When the story first broke, things went crazy,” he said. “I’ve had donations from people as far away as Australia, Canada and Europe. From what I hear, all over the country people are participating in similar efforts in taking care of lunch accounts. It’s a really neat way to take care of our kids, and it makes us all feel good.”
Thompson was referred to Horne by longtime friend and community member Victoria Garcia-Baker, whose two grandchildren attend the school. While at the school, Garcia-Baker donated $300 to Thompson’s cause.
“I’m excited to be here and be a part of this,” Garcia Baker said. “Kenny has been a good friend for many years, and I’m so proud of him for starting this movement in the Houston area and beyond.”
Horne principal Stephanie Thomas said she was thrilled to accept Thompson’s donation, which coincided with the school’s February effort to model random acts of kindness for students.
“My whole reason for entering public education was to have a positive impact on as many lives as possible. It is a blessing to have members of our community that are willing to do whatever it takes to make a positive impact on the lives of others as well,” Thomas said. “Mr. Thompson and the Feed the Future Forward foundation have modeled these random acts of kindness for our students and families. Now our students can observe the positive impact this makes in our school and our community. Horne is blessed to have received this donation from Feed the Future Forward.”
Thompson, who works full time as a union stage hand, said he has a passion for helping public school students. He has served his local elementary school in Spring Branch as a mentor for several years.
“Cy-Fair has been gracious and open-armed in welcoming me in,” he said. “Like most districts, they want the community to help support their schools—whether it’s something like this or volunteering, mentoring or tutoring. I’m just one person, and look where I’m at right now. Even if you don’t have kids, you probably have a school around you that needs help in some form or fashion. It’s pretty easy to get involved.”
Kenny Thompson of nonprofit Feed the Future Forward, Inc. signs a check worth $965.67 to pay off 158 outstanding lunch account balances at Horne Elementary School as principal Stephanie Thomas looks on Monday morning.
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