Local eighth-grader Ben Hofer has pledged to eliminate Austin ISD’s school lunch debt. Hofer started the project he calls LunchCounts! as part of a school project, with a goal of raising $18,000 to pay off all of the school lunch debt in the district.
To that end, Hofer recently presented Austin ISD officials with a check for $10,000 in a ceremony at Blazier Elementary School. Hofer’s campaign page states, “Being stressed or embarrassed about not having enough money for food is disheartening. I’m sure parents have a lot of worries, and lunch for their kids should not be one of them.”
“We are very appreciative of the generosity of Ben, and his commitment to helping address hunger issues in Austin,” says Anneliese Tanner, Executive Director for Food Services. “In a city with so many food options, it often goes unnoticed that we have a lot of hunger. At Austin ISD, children are provided with a healthy, tasty meal, regardless of their ability to pay. All of these funds support Austin ISD, so that we are able to provide meals.”