Sorority raises money to pay Marion students' lunch debt

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MARION, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Second graders usually head to their lunch period without a worry about how it's actually getting paid for. But, if there's not enough money in the lunch account they may be left without another option. The Marion Independent School district has a budget cap of 75 dollars per student. After that, no lunch.

"Even though it's only October we already have kids reaching that 75 dollar limit and trying to support families with what do we do the rest of the year and how do we get them those lunches," said Starry Elementary School Principal Annette Maier. "Kids need to eat they need that energy for the rest of their day so they can be focused and positive learners."

But a sorority at Cornell College is trying to raise money to pay off those debts. Beta Psi Eta Service Chair Sara Renaud says it's a cause that hits home for her.

"I personally know what it feels like to go without a lunch when I was younger so it feels good to be able to help in a way that I wasn't able to when I was younger," said Renaud.

Beta Si Eta will be putting donation jars at front desks of local businesses.

"It's a huge support for the families that we know struggle a lot to pay off those lunches that don't always have a means to get the lunches and the support that they need," said Maier.

"That means a lot," said Parent Ryan Lindaman. "I mean, it really goes to show older kids are willing to take care of stuff that needs taking care of because that's pretty important to think when you don't have any food in your tummy."

Renaud says that so far you can find one of those donation jars at Mr. Bean's in Marion or donate at