Claudia Vieira Heisholt ’99, Jen Bearce Crown ’98, and Sue Thompson
Today’s SJA Shining Stars are Claudia Vieira Heisholt ’99, Jen Bearce Crown ’98, and Sue Thompson. They have spearheaded the Neighbors Helping Neighbors food drive for the Barnet area out of McIndoes Academy.
When Claudia heard about schools figuring out how to feed students while closed due to COVID-19, she started thinking about meals for others in need like elderly community members and those who may be quarantined due to illness. She discussed the idea of food support with Jen, who realized McIndoes Academy would be an ideal spot to hold a community food drive for Barnet residents. They teamed up with Sue, a loyal community member, to start the food drive.
There have been six successful food drops with more scheduled. The drives are held on Sundays from 2:00-4:00 p.m. with proper protocols in place to support social distancing.
While Claudia, Jen, and Sue have been the driving force behind the effort, the support of fellow McIndoes Academy Trustees and community members have made this project take off. Point people for Barnet residents to call to request support are individuals who are connected to the community and who live in various regions of the town, including: Tina Morrison (past parent), Kathy Roosa (past parent/former faculty), Deb Adams King ’77, Jeremy ’90 (faculty) and Roxanne Persons ’92 Roberts, Tammy Jewell Carpenter ’88 and Dylan Ford ’92.
In addition, they have received donations or offers of support from Warden Mountain Meat and Maple (Laurie Warden ’15, Maria Warden ’13, and Robert Warden ’17 with parents, William and Koren Warden), Barnet Mountain Meats (David and Lori Aiken Wright ’74) and Pete and Gerry’s Organic Eggs (Jesse Laflamme ’96/Trustee).
Many community members have stepped up to drop off food, provide monetary support, volunteer to assist advertising efforts and other needs, and are now engaged in helping to procure a refrigerator to store perishable items like milk, eggs, cheese, and meat.
They expect to continue the food drive for some time as the effects of COVID-19 will continue to be felt for months to come.