Swimmers show generosity in Mankato

Swimmers show generosity by supporting the Backpack Food Program

Mankato Mantas hosted the Penguin Invite on January 28…and they had more than swimming in mind.  

The athletes of the Mantas Swim Club invited participants and families to join in supporting the BackPack Food Program. 39% of elementary students (more than 800) in the Mankato Public Schools are enrolled in the Free and Reduced Lunch program for breakfast and lunch during the school week. The BackPack Food Program provides a weekend’s worth of healthy, well-balanced meals to hungry youth. Food packs, discreetly distributed on Fridays, include breakfast, lunch and a snack for each day of the weekend or school break.

Each athlete that made a donation of food received a rubber penguin duck for session prize drawings.

And the Mantas and participating teams collected more than 1,000 items to donate. Megan Burrows, who serves as a Junior Athlete Rep for Minnesota Swimming in addition to being a student athlete with the Mantas, reported that “The Backpack Food Program was astounded when I walked in with that amount of food! They told me to thank everyone who donated for thinking of the kids and for wanting to help around the community. It really means a lot to them as they continue to expand this program to more and more kids!” 

Megan also expressed her own gratitude to the swimming community. “This started with just a little thought and seeing its results, it strengthened my love for Minnesota Swimming even more. I am so glad athletes and families are willing to help out in the community and donate items to help others. So please let those participating teams know the amazing help they have provided for kids and the Backpack Food Program!”