Piarist Outreach helps local program feed kids.

The following is an article from the Painstville Herald.

JCSO “Full Baskets, Full Bellies” feeds 300 kids

A Paintsville Herald staff report


For the second year, the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department oversaw the “Full Baskets, Full Bellies” project to ensure more than 300 children in need would not go hungry while they are home for two weeks on Christmas Break.

The sheriff’s office began taking donations as far back as October, with volunteers collecting donations at Walmart and Food City.

“Last year, when we began this project, we weren’t sure how many students we would be able to impact,” said Sheriff Dewayne Price. “This year, we were more prepared and aware of the number of students that we would need to impact.  With the summer mobile lunch program implemented this past summer, we knew we wanted to reach many of the students that had taken advantage of the summer lunch program. With the help of the family resource center directors, I was able to obtain contact information for many of those students’ parents or guardians. Either Deputy Clark or one of the volunteers contacted those folks and advised them of the project.”

The students received their baskets at one of several giveaway events, including a swimming party, personal deliveries or a day long event at the sheriff’s office.

Sheriff Price said that, in addition to getting the baskets into the hands of the students, he wanted to spend this year meeting them personally.

“Some have never met an officer, others may have had parents arrested,” Price said. “I wanted them to know I, or one of the Johnson County Sheriff’s officers, are always a phone call away.”

Program organizers worked with Audrey Collins of the Piarist School Outreach and Ramanda Penix at the First Methodist Church in Paintsville, and were able to use extra food from the program to help stock the church’s Blessing Box

“Our community projects touch hundreds of people each year,” Price said. “However, this project is the most meaningful to me. We feed kids.”