The Dickinson BackPack Program began in September 2013, as a result of Dickinson Public School staff coming together and discussing the needs of students in Dickinson Public Schools. One of the major needs identified was hunger among students on weekends and school breaks. Staff learned it only takes $4.50 to feed a hungry student for one weekend.
With the help of a BackPack Program representative from the Great Plains Food Bank, the Dickinson BackPack Program organized and partnered with St. John Lutheran Church. St. John provides 501c3 status, space to store the BackPack food packs, funding, and a volunteer base for packing and distributing the backpacks.
Through the help of some generous donors, The Dickinson BackPack Program was able to begin distributing BackPack food packs on January 10, 2014. Food packs contain easy to prepare food items and include juice packs, granola bars, shelf stable milk, ready to eat spaghetti, and soup. Approximately 180 packs were delivered to students in need every Friday until the end of the 2014 school year. School staff and volunteers will resume distributing BackPack food packs when the next school year begins.