Danny Walsh organizes donation drive of federally-funded meals

Over one hundred meals to be donated weekly


Talia Lissauer

Senior Danny Walsh carries federally funded meals to his car to be donated. Walsh will be donating unneeded meals twice a week for the rest of the year.

Talia Lissauer

When a few friends dropped off their federally funded lunches at senior Danny Walsh’s house he collected and donated 310 meals in two days. After months of planning, Walsh said he has begun to pick up 206 people’s unneeded meals twice a week and will continue to do so for the rest of the school year. 

“It’s not terribly hard. In the end, it did take a couple of months to organize. But at least in the beginning, it was just such an easy solution that solves these two problems or at least helps these two problems become less bad. It just seems so obvious and just so perfect,” Walsh said. 

Since the beginning of the school year, students have been able to pick up free meals on Monday and Wednesday. However, Park only gets reimbursed for the meals that are picked up. After hearing about this in class, Walsh said he worked with his friends to collect their lunches to donate to those in need to help solve two problems.

The idea to create a Google form where students could give permission for their meals to be donated came about when senior Maya Halpern wanted more people to have the opportunity to be involved. 

“We thought more people would agree to be involved if they could just sign over their meals,” Halpern said. “Over 100 people have filled out the Google Form now, so we can just pick up all of their meals at once and donate them.”

For students who don’t pick up their meals and would like to have theirs donated, Walsh said to fill out this form available in his Instagram bio @dannywalsh. As of Feb. 12, 206 people have filled out the form, and Walsh has collected and donated 614 meals.

“Especially now that we’ve got the Google form going, it’s so easy to do. It takes 10 seconds,” Walsh said. “10 seconds (spent filling out the Google form) basically means … (about) 50 lunches that you then donated.”

With all the struggles that have surfaced because of COVID-19, Halpern said it is simple programs like this that make an impact on the community.  

“It’s really important to be involved in your community and be trying to make a difference,” Halpern said. “We saw a need for, or an opportunity to help people and we wanted to take that.”