During the COVID-19 pandemic, public employees across the nation have given back to their communities in extraordinary ways. From donating to food banks to helping their neighbors and protecting their communities, public employees have been on the front lines.  

Here are stories of public employees in service to their communities.

When teachers brought free lunch to kids amid COVID-19, they saw poverty up close by Samantha Hernandez. As the coronavirus pandemic keeps school doors closed to students and staff, teachers across America have been delivering free school lunches and homework to their students. In Stanfield, Arizona, teachers from Stanfield Elementary School District have been taking school buses up to 150 miles per day to deliver lunches and homework to students. One-hundred percent of students in the school district receive free school lunches. Shiela Garland, one of the teachers who has been taking the daily trek to students’ doorsteps, commented, “Going out there and actually pulling up in front of the houses, you know, to deliver the food and stuff and seeing the situation these kids are living in – it breaks your heart.”

Aurora police officer surprise 4-year old who had birthday party canceled because of COVID-19 by WSPY News. At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic last April, many families had to cancel their plans, including their children’s birthday parties. In Aurora, Colorado, the police department turned to social media to ask community members if they’d like some help celebrating their child’s birthday with a visit from officers. On Facebook, the department posted a video of several officers surprising a four-year-old named Chase who dressed up as a police officer – something he wants to be when he grows up. 

BSSD staff raises over $10k to feed district families by Andrew Miller. Teachers and school personnel from the Big Spring School District in Pennsylvania came through enormously for district families and their communities. Over 125 school district employees, including teachers, administrators, and personnel, raised over $10,000, which was donated to the Big Spring Area Food Bank and the PAW Packs program. Organizer Mallory Farrands, an instructional coach at Oak Flat Elementary in the school district, said, “If you work with kids, you love kids. Our teachers feel so strongly about being there for our families that I feel that this is something that I think they feel called to do. Just like they were called to teach or called to be an aide in the classroom. They want to do anything they can to help the families that need it.”

Be sure to check back next week for more stories of public employees giving back to their communities!