MNW students make meals for tornado victims

-Submitted photo
Manson Northwest Webster High School students unload boxes of freezer meals they prepared for victims of the March 5 tornadoes in Winterset and Norwalk on Friday.

MANSON — When deadly tornadoes ripped through parts of south-central Iowa last weekend, including Winterset and Norwalk, help began pouring in from Iowans across the state — volunteers helping with cleanup and donations of clothes and toiletries for those who lost everything.

Jessica Lavicky, a family and consumer science teacher at Manson Northwest Webster High School, wanted to help out in another way.

“I figured we could give back, and what better way to do it,” she said. “We’re good at cooking and the students enjoyed cooking and making the foods and packaging them to deliver and see exactly who they’re helping.”

So Lavicky and 18 MNW students spent Thursday and Friday in the FCS classroom and kitchen preparing dozens of casseroles and desserts to be frozen and delivered to the communities in need.

“We made tuna noodle casserole, since it’s Lent,” Lavicky said.

-Submitted photo
Manson Northwest Webster High School students Adelynn Hudek, Brooklyn Boehler, Marleigh Doan and Makayla Geerdes stand in the FCS classroom on Thursday, showing many of the meals they’ve prepared to give to victims of the March 5 tornadoes.

They also made tater tot casseroles, chicken and broccoli rice casseroles, croissant breakfast sandwiches, meatballs and more.

“We also had banana bread, cookies, brownies and Rice Krispie treats,” she said. “We figured the families and kids might enjoy that.”

On Friday, Lavicky and seven of the students drove the meals to Winterset and Norwalk. In Norwalk, they brought 73 meals to the food pantry at New Life Lutheran Church. Most of the meals will go to families in a low-income housing development, she said.

“They were about half a mile from the tornado and they got missed as far as big debris, but they had to watch it out their window and lost power for like 36 hours,” Lavicky said. “So they lost all their food, everything in their fridges and freezers.”

In Winterset, Lavicky connected with Kendra Alexander, coordinator of student services at Winterset schools.

“She said that most of the families have been in hotels, and a few were with family members,” Lavicky said.

Lavicky and her students brought around 50 meals to Winterset High School on Friday.

“I was going to deliver them all myself, but then the students asked if they could help deliver, so we turned it into a day off school to go finish the community service project,” she said. “They got to see who they were helping, which is nice.”

After delivering the meals, Lavicky said the group drove around to the areas that received significant damage to see part of the cleanup process.


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