10 tons of PB&J collected for kids in need

MILWAUKEE -- They took on the challenge, and on Monday, November 12th they got to see the results of their hard work.  78 local schools teamed up with Feeding America and collected 10 tons of peanut butter and jelly for kids in need during October.  That's 20,929 pounds collected in the month-long challenge!

“It's just wow.  I can't believe how much peanut butter and jelly there is,” Keaton Cooper, a seventh-grader from St. Patrick Parish School in Elkhorn said.

On Monday, the winning schools got to sort through the PB&J and pack boxes to be delivered to shelters, pantries and meal programs to feed hungry children.

“This is the second year we've won and this is the first year I’ve got to come packing and really help with it.  I'm just happy we could come and do what we can to help,” Jenna Buraczewski, an eighth-grader at Steffen Middle School in Mequon said.

Steffen Middle School and St. Patrick Parish School both topped the list for most pounds collected per student. Whitefish Bay Middle School collected the most - 3,000 pounds on its own.

The effort is all about kids helping kids.

“There are 105,000 children in need and struggling with hunger throughout the eastern half of our state, so this program really helps educate children at a basic level of what they can do to help feed another child,”  Gina Styer from Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin said.

Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are an everyday staple, packed with protein, but needy kids may not have had regular access to them, until now.

“You just eat one peanut butter and jelly from one jar and this is many.  It's just amazing,” Cooper said.

For their generous donations, each winning school will receive a $250 gift card to a sporting goods store and will be recognized by the Bucks at Saturday's game. 

This is the 10th year of the PB&J Challenge.  In that time, Feeding America and area schools have collected enough peanut butter and jelly to provide more than 4 million sandwiches to children.