As part of the Thurgood Marshall Academy Mentor Day, we welcomed about 30 sophomore students and their mentors for a day of food, fun and service. We had a jam-packed morning and they came prepared to work hard and have fun.
We split the students and their mentors into two groups. The first group participated in cooking Mini BBQ Turkey Burgers (PDF) and Baked Sweet Potatoes (PDF). Smoothie stations, a salad bar and a focus group helped assess how to put together fresh produce bags to use at TMA.
Excited students got to cook with Grace Lichaa, who was champ on the cooking show “Chopped,” and had a great time tasting the nutritious food they cooked.
The second group packed 375 bags for our pilot Fresh Produce Weekend Bags. Filled with delicious fresh produce, the bags contained some of the same produce and recipes used in the cooking activity.
Weekend Bag Coordinator Olivia Smith spoke with students and mentors about the impact of the program.
Mentors learned about volunteer opportunities through our Volunteer Leaders program. And the TMA students participated in a variety of valuable learning activities at the food bank.
But the learning was a two-way street, as food bank staff found out more about some of the amazing things Thurgood Marshall students are involved in, including a student garden.
We were fortunate to have such great, engaged students who were genuinely excited about cooking and volunteering. We are looking forward to future chances to work with Thurgood Marshall, including a job shadow day in May, regular student volunteering and adding them as a fresh produce weekend bag site.