The Yankton community is coming together to help federal workers who have yet to receive a paycheck. KELOLAND’s Whitney Fowkes took a closer look at programs that are assisting furloughed government workers.
After missing their first paycheck this month — federal workers are having a hard time paying bills and providing for their family. The Yankton School District hopes to relieve some of that burden by offering free or reduced lunches for children of those employees.
“Once you apply, you qualify for the rest of the school year. And that’s going to be really nice because a lot of them are going to be having to catch up. And so, knowing they can get through the school year qualifying or getting free or reduced lunches that will definitely maybe help with their budget,” Director of Child Nutrition for Yankton Schools,Sandi Kramer, said.
Kramer says this isn’t just a peace of mind for parents, this also helps the students.
“They’re not going to be one more burden because they’re going to be getting free breakfast and free lunches or reduced. It helps release for the student. And that’s what we’re really here about in our school district,” Sandi Kramer said.
Yankton School District isn’t the only entity lending a helping hand to those being affected by the shutdown.
“Late last week we introduced a program for the federal government workers who are out of a paycheck. Some are still working some are not working but they’re still out of a paycheck and we introduced a program to introduce zero percent zero fees loans for up to 90 days,” President and Chief Operating Officer of First Dakota National Bank Rob Stephenson said.
First Dakota National Bank says they plan to keep this program running up to 30 days after the shutdown and any federal worker can apply for a loan.
“We tried to think of what are all the ways that we can help or what are all the circumstances that might come up for folks in our service areas that we’re trying to, you know, lend a small hand to,” Rob Stephenson said.
Rapid City has also started a similar lunch program in their school district.