By Drew M. Bailey, Contributing Writer
Northborough – Students at Algonquin Regional High School (ARHS) assisted in the production of meals for needy families as part of a special Valentine's Day charity project.
The meals were delivered to homeless families receiving aid from the Department of Transitional Assistance, who are temporarily housed in a motel in Northborough.
The Northborough Food Pantry made the charity possible through a Community Spirit mini-grant from Harvard Pilgrim HealthCare.
Susan Halpin, a nutrition and culinary arts teacher at Algonquin also sits on the Northborough Food Pantry advisory council. Halpin was asked to come up with a menu. She had bigger plans. Using the project as a means of educating her students, she devised a heart-healthy menu, and an associated educational program to supplement it.
Her students learned about eating healthy and about helping those in need, all at the same time.
“I think it's a good thing,” Taryn Ryan said about the program.
The meal consisted of white bean chicken chili, homemade tortilla chips, and chocolate covered strawberries prepared by another Algonquin nutrition and culinary arts teacher, Candace Laughlin, and her students. The meals were prepared so they could be heated in the microwaves of the families” motel rooms. The packaging supplies were donated by Wegmans.
Alex Sabel, another of Halpin's students, said he and his classmates were pleased to be able to participate.
“It gives us a chance to give back to the community,” he said.
(Photos/Drew M. Bailey)