The AeroSTEM Academy is working on its own nutrition program for food and is seeking the help of the community to get it off the ground.
Food service manager Nikki Fous said the academy typically received meals from a different school district and is currently working on its own program.
“What we wanted to do to make ourselves even more independent as the AeroSTEM Academy, we wanted to develop our own lunch program,” said Fous. “We worked with the California Department of Education (USDA) and took all necessary steps to create our own program.”
The academy is located at Sutter County Airport, and Fous said they are negotiating with Yuba-Sutter Fairgrounds about additional classroom and kitchen facilities for the next school year. She said that since some students will be at the fairgrounds and others at the airport location, they will be serving meals at two locations.
“(Since we) cannot expand so quickly on the airport premises, the short-term solution is here again on the exhibition grounds,” said Fous.
However, since this is the first time they have their own meal program, the school does not have the necessary kitchen equipment.
The kitchen on the exhibition grounds is certified, but currently has only limited equipment.
“There are grants that we will apply for when they open, but in the meantime, we are asking our community members if they might have anything we might be able to use,” said Fous. “… We need everything from stainless steel mixing bowls, knives to refrigerators, freezers, ovens and anything else you can think of to prepare delicious school meals.”
She said they were ready to raise funds or discuss discounted prices for used equipment. They are also non-profit and can provide a tax card to anyone who so wishes.
“The percentage of children who really depend on school lunches is enormous and I am so happy that I will be able to prepare a fun meal for these children – even if they still bring home a bag of food to do that to do, ”said Fous.
She said they plan to start the nutrition program for the next school year starting in mid-August.
“I have faith in all of us as a community. I think we are really strong at coming together in times of need,” said Fous.
Those interested can contact Fous at AeroSTEM Academy on 742-2531 or via the school’s Facebook page.