The Our Seva charity has spent years repairing homes for seniors, veterans, and disabled people and working to raise funds for the North Texas Food Bank. But this year, the charity decided to focus on ending hunger in schools.
Our Seva is a nonprofit incorporated in 2011. It moved to Lewisville with founder Prit Patel, who works as Lewisville’s neighborhood services coordinator. She founded the charity to honor her parents by addressing local food and shelter needs.
Every fall, the charity rehabilitates the exterior of homes of veterans, seniors and disabled individuals, but every spring, it focuses on food. The charity had previously worked with the North Texas Food Bank, but this year, donations to the #For1Meal campaign went toward paying off school lunch debt at local schools.
For the 2018 school year, families of three who made less than $26,546 annually qualified for free lunches and those who made less than $37,777 qualified for reduced-cost lunches. Those numbers are set at the federal level. Many families across the country who make too much to qualify for free or assisted lunches still can’t afford school lunches, and so students generate debt on their lunch account balances. The penalties for delinquency vary across the nation.
LISD spokesperson Amanda Brim said that kids in this district are given five days’ worth of breakfasts and lunches as a grace period for parents to refill their account. Past that, they’re offered a courtesy meal of a sunbutter sandwich — like a peanut butter sandwich, but made with sunbutter, which is based in sunflower seeds and used to avoid aggravating nut allergies — milk and fruits and vegetables of their choosing. Brim said negative balances across the district combined for $30,829 as of May 1, and said the district appreciated Our Seva’s efforts.
Patel said organizations and individuals across the country are raising funds for delinquent school lunch accounts, and Our Seva decided to join them this year. During April, the charity asked residents to skip one meal and donate the cost to their For1Meal campaign. Patel said they’ve raised $1,752 so far. Patel said the funds will be donated to a local school with a high percentage of open school lunch accounts.
Though their drive is over, the Lewisville ISD Education Foundation accepts donations year-round to feed the hungry and help improve homes for those in need. You can donate by visiting Lewisville ISD Education Foundation here and entering “Angel Fund and For1Meal” into the special instructions box.
Learn more about Our Seva at their Facebook page.
This article has been updated throughout to clarify Our Seva’s roles in its charitable endeavors.