The William N. Pennington Foundation, based in Reno, NV, has gifted the Boys & Girls Clubs of Mason Valley with a $35,000 donation to their food program. The William N. Pennington Foundation, who also recently supported other Boys & Girls Clubs in Northern Nevada, is a large supporter of various organizations in the area.
Jennifer Martinez, Nutrition Coordinator for BGCMV, says the donation will really help with their increase in meals served year-round at their club sites in Yerington, Silver Springs and Dayton.
“We served breakfast and lunch to the kids attending summer school and begindergarten this year, plus the amount of kids attending the Club has definitely gone up,” Martinez said, citing that the Dayton Club Site alone serves upwards of 500 meals a day during the summer. She also said anyone from the community 18 or younger can walk in and eat for free.
All of those extra meals served can really put a strain on the Club’s budget. While the food program is largely funded by the Nevada Department of Agriculture Child Nutrition Program, there are extra expenses to be paid. Christina Hurt, the Club’s grant director, said that the money from the William N. Pennington Foundation will help cover those additional costs.
Even though serving hundreds of meals a day can be a daunting task, Martinez speaks for all the Club’s nutrition coordinators when she says it’s worth it.
“At the end of the day when I go home, I feel good about what I do,” Martinez said. “I fed a child a nutritious meal they might not get without the Club.”
Martinez knows that during times of economic hardship, families tend to substitute more expensive healthy foods with the cheaper, less nutritious meals.
“The William N. Pennington Foundation is coming to the rescue of more than just our organization,” Hurt said. “They’re helping us provide a much-needed service to the kids.”
Travis Crowder, chief professional officer for the BGCMV, agrees with Hurt sentiments.
“It’s been a pleasure working with a first-class organization like the William N. Pennington Foundation,” Crowder said.