Families facing food insecurity in the Sioux Falls area are getting a little help from students in Suzy Ries’ family and consumer science classes at Jefferson High School.

More than 20 students in Ries’ foods class spent a period before lunch cooking spicy goulash for 21 families in the area. Two other class periods also help with this effort, Ries said.

Each Thursday, the students prepare weekly crockpot meals for the families, who stay anonymous to them. Students know the size and food preferences/allergens of the families, though, and prepare the meals accordingly.

Students in the Advanced Foods class mix spices for a spicy goulash to be sent to families facing food insecurity on Thursday, October 28, 2021, at Jefferson High School in Sioux Falls.

All 21 families were given crockpots at the start of the school year to prepare meals in. Funding for the crockpots was provided through a “Proud Grant” from the Sioux Falls Education Foundation, and help from the 211 Helpline Center and DoorDash delivers the meals to families.

“I’ve had this idea for 10 years,” Ries said. “This project is part of giving back. Students need an opportunity to give back” and they embrace it, she added.