Today I want to highlight the lunch buddy program. I want to share Pauline Muntz's story with you. This is Pauline's telling of what the lunch buddy has meant to her over the years.
MONTCLAIRE LUNCH BUDDY PROGRAM There are many children at Montclaire who are in need of someone special in their lives in addition to their own families. The reasons for their needs are many and varied. Even children who are not selected to have a Buddy plead and ask how they can get a Buddy. I have been blessed for the past 13 years with 7 lunch buddies, 1 boy and 6 girls. They have been Foster grandchildren to me one lunch period a week. I plan my week with that one day and time most important to me, and I know it is very important to them. These children are very loving to me, they are polite, a lot of fun to be with, interesting to talk with. There have been many situations during these past years that have given me the opportunity to be a help to them. A third grader confided to me that she was not doing well with her reading because she was so nervous because she couldn’t see the words. After one meeting with the Principle, Mrs. Davis, it was just a week or so and my Buddy was reading well wearing glasses. My boy lunch buddy was a victim of “bullying” and shared that with me. When I reported that to Sandy Devoid she was able to help my boy with that problem because she knew the person in charge of those situations in the school system, and the bullying did stop. One of my Buddies wore an insulin pump just as I do, it was fun checking and comparing our blood sugar numbers and then pumping our insulin together. When the new school year begins the teachers observe the children and determine which children could benefit from having a lunch buddy. I was always happy with who they chose for me. My second Buddy stayed with me for all 5 years, currently I have 2 ten years olds from first grade, now in their 4th year and I am sure I will have them for their 5th year. When this school year started, my Buddies told me that they had decided they should call me Grandma Pauline instead of Miss Pauline. I love my lunch Buddies and the program.
If you are interested in volunteering to be a lunch buddy at Montclaire, please let us know. I also encourage you to talk with Pauline in person to hear how this program has had an impact on her spiritual journey. It is hard not to get excited about the program when talking with her!