If you've checked the COVID-19 Response section of this website in the past week, you'll notice Rosie the Riveter makes a lot of appearances and you might be wondering why. It's pretty simple: she epitomizes the spirit of doing hard things and doing them with a "can-do" spirit.
Just like Wyoming's "lunch ladies."
When the realities of the COVID-19 crisis began to sink in, Wyoming's Nutrition Programs State Director, Tamra Jackson, launched into action. With her team and the cooperation of nutrition services employees across the state, a strategy was developed to make sure Wyoming's kids would be cared for even in the most uncertain of times. Waivers were applied for, spreadsheets were squinted at, and endless details were figured out. When faced with a shortage of hours in the day, these crisis responders did not throw up their hands and quit. They said "We Can Do It."
We asked Tamra Jackson how she would describe her team—at the Wyoming Department of Education and across the state—and she told us they are courageous, passionate, determined, caring, and capable. In times of crisis, there is nothing better to be than those five words. How fortunate Wyoming is to have an army of school district employees who fit this description perfectly! They did not hesitate, but hit the ground running doing whatever needed to be done. They worked long hours without being asked. The fact that every district is serving food to its students during school closure is nothing short of amazing.
So many of our Wyoming neighbors are responding similarly right now; healthcare workers, grocery store clerks and stockers and supply chain management experts, truck drivers, railroaders, nonprofit directors and employees, and educators are just some of the positions that have answered the call to do more without a playbook. We here at Wyoming Hunger Initiative wanted to be sure to say thank you to all of them; we especially want to let our nutrition services employees know how much we appreciate their "can-do" spirit to help keep Wyoming kids fed and nourished.
We're all in this together.
p.s. Take a look (swipe left/right!) at at our gallery of pictures from school districts across the state preparing and providing breakfasts and lunches for all their students.