The Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project presented a $1,000 check to Bonneville Joint School District 93. | Courtesy Jeremy Taylor
IDAHO FALLS — A local man is doing what he can to help raise money and donate it to schools to benefit students and their families who don’t have the means to pay their lunch debt.
Jeremy Taylor kicked off “The Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project” last year in January. He plans to make his first donation of the year this week in Pocatello.
“I donate a portion of my salary and invite others to join the cause and open it up to the public via Venmo,” Taylor told EastIdahoNews.com. “What the funds do, literally is 100% of the proceeds go towards these school districts and then they allocate them appropriately to the schools and more specifically, the students that are most in need with the student lunch debt that accrues.”
He recently donated to school districts like Idaho Falls School District 91, including Dora Erickson Elementary School.
Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project presented a $400 check to Dora Erickson Elementary. | Courtesy Jeremy Taylor
“It was a wonderful gift, and it made a big difference to a lot of our families,” said Mark Hunsaker, the Dora Erickson Elementary School principal. “We were able to clear old past due lunch balances, which took a lot of pressure off some of our families who were struggling during the pandemic.”
Taylor has also donated money to Bonneville Joint School District 93, which has benefited the district.
“The health and wellbeing of the students we get to serve will always be the top priority of our Child Nutrition Department. There have been many instances in the past where a worker has covered the charges for a student meal from the money in their own pocket to make sure a child doesn’t go hungry,” Phil Campbell told EastIdahoNews.com, a spokesman for Bonneville School District 93. “This generous donation from the Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project will feed 333 secondary school students or 400 elementary school kids. That’s incredible and we are very appreciative of their generosity and support.”
Taylor said through The Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project, he was able to make two full donations of $1,000 a piece in 2021 with the help from the community.
“I saw everything from $5 to $20, $100 donations from several different people,” said Taylor.
Taylor said he is trying to spread the word about his cause to help more schools.
He explained that he began the project after he was inspired when he participated in Coins for Christmas, which is a fundraiser and benefit program administered in Eastern Idaho by East Idaho Credit Union. The program gives people an opportunity to donate their spare pocket change to fund the purchase of new shoes for children who need it.
“I have been in East Idaho and in radio for 22 years and over those years, doing Coins for Christmas shoes was a big deal and to go see these kids— you would see the ones in need and talk to the teachers. For me, that kind of got the wheels spinning,” said Taylor.
Taylor said he loves giving to the school districts and he doesn’t want to stop until everyone is helped.
“Our goal frankly is to not let any school district go unhelped and so whether that takes me two years or 10 years, I don’t care. I am going to keep doing this for as long as there is a need and as long as I am able and in a position to do so,” he said.
Taylor said he will be making the first donation of this year for The Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project this week to the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25. He will present a $1,000 check. If you’d like to know more about The Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project or if you’d like to contribute, click here for more information.
Jeremy Taylor School Lunch Project presented a $600 check to Idaho Falls School District 91. | Courtesy Jeremy Taylor
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