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Julie Herbel

“They are going to be ecstatic…”

Julie Herbel

Julie Herbel works as a librarian at the New Town Public Library. She noticed many children were coming in hungry after school each day and wished to do something about it. But she struggled to find the healthy food options she desired. The Great Plains Food Bank Pop-up Perishable Food Program has provided those resources and has helped fill a critical need for hungry children in New Town.

Julie Herbel began noticing a trend.

She spends her time as a librarian at the public library in New Town where her days are filled with interaction with students and members of the community. While her days are busy from start to finish, she started to notice the busiest time of each day was immediately following school.

And as children would enter the library for something to do after school or to spend extra time learning, she noticed many were entering hungry.

Julie began offering snacks to the students that were in need.

“We have children that come in after school to our library and some of them just come in to eat,” she said. “So we like to provide healthy snacks and healthy choices, but sometimes it’s not quite as healthy as I would like.”

It was critical for Julie to be able to fill that void the children were missing.

Looking for ways to offer more nutritious options, she discovered the Great Plains Food Bank Pop-up Perishable Food Program would soon be visiting New Town. The program brings trucks full of fresh food and produce into rural communities that are struggling with access to food. This specific distribution in New Town would provide more than 16,000 pounds of food to more than 700 individuals.

Julie attended the distribution that day and was able to collect snacks, apples, potatoes, peppers and squash, among other items.

“They are going to be ecstatic,” she said about how the fresh food items will be received by the children.

Inside the library she also has items to prepare the food such as a slow cooker, microwave, quesadilla maker and other utensils. All of it combines to offer the students in New Town a greater variety of healthy options.

They are options that wouldn’t have been made available without all of the contributions to the Great Plains Food Bank.

“I want to say a huge thank you to every single one of you who is helping our community as well as other communities,” she said. “You never know where your donations go, but I’m telling you we are going to put them to very good use. And I just thank you for your kindness and your help. It is greatly appreciated.”


© Great Plains Food Bank 2021