We are excited to announce that our Development Director, Caitlyn Scales, has been recognized by No Kid Hungry Louisiana as one of eight Hunger Heroes from across the state! Caitlyn was chosen because of her steadfast commitment to ensure kids across Louisiana have been able to rely on healthy meals during an extraordinarily difficult year. No Kid Hungry Louisiana’s 2022 Hunger Heroes, nominated by members of their own community, included nutrition staff and program leaders as well as volunteers at schools and local organizations on the front lines feeding children. “In good times and in times of crisis, these Hunger Heroes are the backbone of their communities. They truly are first responders, showing up every day during a global pandemic or following a devastating storm to ensure kids can still count on the meals they need to thrive,” said No Kid Hungry Louisiana Director Rhonda Jackson. “We are so thankful for their work, and for all the dedicated people working in our schools and communities to keep kids strong and healthy.”
With 1 in 4 children in Louisiana facing hunger, the people who prepare, serve and plan school and community meals are some of the most important people confronting this crisis. Caitlyn supported TOP as founding Board President and recently transitioned to be a full-time team member in July 2021. Only a month into the job, the devastation of Hurricane Ida hit. Caitlyn stepped up without hesitation to help lead mass feeding efforts and find immediate funding to support food security in disaster-affected areas across 8 parishes in Southeast Louisiana. With a positive and caring attitude, she worked seven days a week loading trucks, driving to distribution sites, and handing out meals to families and kids in need. Relief and recovery support following Hurricane Ida continued for our team and partners in hard-hit areas through the end of 2021. Thanks to a recent grant from Capital Area United Way, our team is also able to extend recovery support to partners in need through Spring 2022 - an effort covered by our recently launched initiative, Vibrant Communities.
Caitlyn showed that when you work in the child nutrition field, all jobs go back to making sure no child goes hungry. No individual in this fight for equity and access to having a child’s basic needs meet is too important to be in the field alongside community members in even the most dangerous of conditions. Our team wears many hats and enjoys the privilege of working across projects, new ideas, and our Hunger Relief Hero sites to make sure no kid is left hungry outside the school day and during the summer months.
Congratulations, Caitlyn and all recipients of this honor. For the full list of No Kid Hungry’s 2022 Hunger Hero Honorees, check out THIS LINK.