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Project Lunchbox helps students achieve their potential

Deputy Principal Deb Kelly (left) and School Chaplain Kotiah Pilly receive the weekly supply of lunchboxes from Calamvale Corps Officer Major Dianne Gluyas. INSET: Sanet Smit and her book.


Every week, 20 or so students at a local school in Brisbane receive a healthy lunch at school prepared by the Calamvale Corps.

The idea to supply lunches came from a leader’s retreat several years ago, which had a focus on meeting the needs of families, according to Major Dianne Gluyas, Calamvale Corps Officer.

The school chaplain mentioned the number of students coming to school without lunch and the negative impact that had on their learning, energy levels and ability to focus.

“We really hope it makes a difference and helps the kids achieve their potential,” Dianne said. “We want to raise more funds so we can provide more lunches and more substantial food in the lunchbox.”

The local member of parliament wants to find more funds to supplement the money raised by the corps. The corps is also seeking support from local businesses to expand the program to other local schools that have expressed an interest in receiving the lunchboxes.

The book promotion to encourage people to donate to the lunchbox project.

The corps liaises with the school chaplain to provide meals to the students most in need. The housing crisis, rising cost of living, and individual family circumstances make it incredibly difficult for some families to prepare lunches. Some children don’t attend school when they don’t have lunch, and others go to the playground without anything to eat.

As well as raising funds, corps members help prepare the lunchboxes and write encouraging notes to go with the meal.

“We want to let them know we care,” Dianne said. “It is missional for us and a way of sharing our resources and blessings.”

Sanet Smit, a community member and children’s author, was so impressed with the program that she is donating the proceeds of her book Frankie Goes Home exclusively to Project Lunchbox.


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