BATAVIA – A group of residents of Covenant Living at the Holmstad wake up early most Thursday mornings to cook breakfast for Batavia High School students at Batavia Covenant Church, which is located across the street from the school.
"Bulldog Breakfast" offer a free, nutritious meal for the students, who have late-start day every Thursday, according to a news release from Covenant Living at the Holmstad.
“We get to the church by 6:15 in the morning and our work begins with preparing the pancakes, French toast sticks, egg casserole and sausages,” said Randy Johnson, a volunteer cook, in a news release. “We’ve got our system down—from putting out a lawn sign to remind students, setting up the buffet lines, getting the juice table ready, greeting students at the door and then ultimately washing the dirty dishes afterwards.”
The release states that about 200 students are served every week. Reverend Eric Landin said in the release that this all comes from the idea of giving back and providing blessings to the community. He’s encouraged by the number of students who show up from a variety of social settings within the school.
“We really couldn’t do this without the volunteer residents from Covenant Living,” said Landin in the release. “We’re blessed to have them and it’s even more exciting to see how they connect and interact with the younger generation. It’s a mutual benefit for everyone.”
“Covenant Living at the Holmstad employs nearly 40 students in our dining services,” added Johnson in the release. “When you think about it, it comes full circle for our group of resident volunteers serving a meal to the students at the Bulldog Breakfast, because it’s usually the other way around.”
The release states that the program was started several years ago to take advantage of the location of the high school, directly across from the church. Many students use the church parking lot and it seemed natural to invite them in for food and stress-free interactions, the release stated.
The next “Bulldog Breakfast” will be held Dec. 12, which will be the final breakfasts for 2019. The first breakfast in 2020 will be on Jan. 9. Breakfasts start at 7:30 a.m.