Welcome to TNKids Nutrition, Inc. - Helping in the fight to improve the nutritional situation of children in Robertson County and the surrounding areas.
TNKids Nutrition Has A Home
TNKids Nutrition, Inc., the parent agency of the Patty Dunn Memorial Backpack Attack Program is pleased to announce a major gift from American Snuff Company, which formerly operated in Springfield as Conwood Company, LLC.
“American Snuff consolidated operations to a new facility in Montgomery County. As a result, we wanted to donate the property located at 1008 Pepper Street to an organization that would make a difference for folks in Robertson County,” said Mick Spach, president of American Snuff Company.
“They heard we were searching for a building, and determined we would make proper use of the warehouse,” said Donny King, Executive Director of TNKids Nutrition.
The Patty Dunn Memorial Backpack Attack Program provides packs of food to students in the Robertson County school system who have been identified by the system as being at risk of having little or nothing to eat on weekends. In the 2012-2013 school year, over 100,000 meals and snacks were provided to students in Robertson County schools.
Currently, approximately 525 students representing every school in the system are being served each week. “After several years of moving from location to location, we finally have a place we can call our own!” said Lisa Duncan, Coordinator of the Program. “We have been blessed over the years, in that churches and businesses allowed us to use their space for storage and assembly of the packs of food. A special thanks goes out to Springfield First United Methodist Church, Springfield Baptist Church, Main Street Church of Christ, Community Bank and Trust, Lee’s Building Center, King Electric, Teasley Farms, and Choice Fabrics.” In describing the needs of the Program, Duncan said, “The amount of food required to serve over 500 students each week is overwhelming. We go through approximately eight pallets of food every month, and having to handle the food two or three times as we move from place to place really strains our volunteers. Having this building will allow us to handle it once. It will also improve our efficiency as we can purchase in even larger quantities, something we are prevented from doing now due to a lack of storage space.”
TNKids Nutrition in a 501(c)(3) agency headquartered in Springfield which deals exclusively with childhood hunger issues. While the Patty Dunn Memorial Backpack Attack Program is the most visible program, they have other programs to address childhood hunger, and those programs will also benefit from having a permanent location. “We operate an After School At-Risk Snack Program at schools and other non-profit locations where children are receiving enrichment. The enrichment activities include homework assistance, tutoring in areas where the student might be struggling, as well as dance, music, and art classes. We are providing approximately 1500 snacks and meals to these students.” explained King. “We also run a Summer Feeding Program where we prepare meals and snacks which are delivered to locations where children gather in the summer when school is dismissed. In summer 2013, we served almost 17,000 meals and snacks to children in Robertson County. This requires a large commercial kitchen, and we have had to rent one the past two years. We will set up a kitchen in the new building, and this will eliminate the hassle of moving things in and out of the rental kitchen.”
TNKids has other programs which do not require much space, but will also benefit from having a permanent location. “When school is closed for scheduled breaks in the fall and spring, and at Christmas, we go into the housing project off of South Main and hand out sack lunches three days a week. We also provide monetary assistance for nutritious meals to childcare providers.” explained King.
To learn more about TNKids Nutrition and the programs offered, visit their website at TNKids.org.
About American Snuff Company
American Snuff Company, LLC is the nation’s second-largest manufacturer of smokeless tobacco products. Its leading brands are Grizzly and Kodiak.To learn more about how Reynolds American and its operating companies are transforming the tobacco industry, visit the transforming tobacco section on the Reynolds American Inc. website.
Backpack Attack Program - The Backpack Attack Program meets at 8:30 every Wednesday that school is in session to make up the food packs for that week. We meet at the TNKids warehouse at 1006 Pepper Street, Springfield. The warehouse is two blocks behind the Depot Restaurant. Come at 8:00 if you can help set up.
In case of inclement weather, we follow the lead of the Robertson County School System. If school is out on Wednesday, we pack on the next day school is in session that week. If school is out on Wednesday, and remains out for the rest of the week, we will pack on the following Wednesday. If schools open late, we still meet at the regular time.
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