Snow days taking a toll on parents, kids financially

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Tuesday marks the fifth day students are not at school in the Mid-South, which can be tough for those who rely on the consistent meals provided.

There was no school Friday, Jan. 12 due to snow and ice, a long Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend and school was out Tuesday due to snow again.

While kids might be rejoicing, their stomachs might not be.

Their parents wallets could be taking a toll too.

Thousands of students are enjoying a snow day in the Mid-South, but there’s also thousands who depend on the schools for a warm meal.

Thankfully there are people stepping up to help.

While students around the Mid-South celebrate snow days.

It’s not always easy on parents.

Students have been out of school now for five days straight.

Mom, Michelle Adair and her family have recently fallen on some hard times. They’re working to get out of their situation.

“That’s a lot of meals,” Adair said.

“Our food bill this week has gone up at least $100 this week,” the mom said.

She’s been able to get some help from the owner of Club Memphis in Orange Mound, but she’s far from the only person facing problems like this.

Wendy Henley and her 10-year-old step-daughter have a safe place to stay and food to eat because of the help from Shepherd’s Inn, a division of Refuge Memphis.

“When the cold came – me, her and her father were on Summer and we had nowhere to go,” Henley said.

The people of the Mid-South are known for their generosity, but even some church groups have had to put a halt to helping due to dangerous conditions.

Pastor Autura  Eason-Williams, with Capleville United Methodist Church, runs a food pantry for the Hickory Hill and Southeast Shelby County communities.

Her church helps more than 100 families a month.

“We actually work with Kirby Middle School and we provide a lunch for kids to take home every Monday,” Pastor Eason-Williams said.

But Eason-Williams says the conditions are too treacherous when it comes to reaching the pantry.

“Our parking lot gets really slick and iced over, and the ramp going up to the food pantry is pretty bad. We don’t want people risking their lives to come up here,” Pastor Eason-Williams said.

And for those who might be struggling right now, Henley has this advice.

“There’s so many people out there that are wandering around and don’t know what to do. There are resources out there, but you have to get up and find them. You have to look. You have to pray,” Henley said.

The food will not go to waste.

It will be distributed at church events tomorrow, but the pantry will not be open.

For information about how to help Shepherd’s Inn you can reach Randy Dickey at 901-690-8193. For information how to help Club Memphis you can reach Ashaki Williams at 901-864-7317.

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