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7Everyday Hero: Evergreen volunteer helps kids stay full, focused throughout the school year

Posted at 10:39 AM, Feb 25, 2020

EVERGREEN, Colo. — The small mountain community of Evergreen certainly packs a big heart.

With the help of Evergreen Lutheran Church, Shelley Harmon created Evergreen's Mountain Backpack program. The program provides backpacks full of food to send home with hungry kids.

"Our backpacks look like a mom packed it and that’s exactly what we want," Harmon said.

Thanks to a partnership with Food Bank of the Rockies, each week Harmon and her helpers stuff packs for more than 200 kids at 14 mountain area schools.

"We give them ideas of how to put their food together because a lot of these kids are at home helping after school," she said. "They’re helping younger siblings or themselves cook."

Mountain Backpacks also stocks emergency food pantries at the schools they serve. The snacks fill kids' bellies. And their hearts.

"One of our little girls in our program told us that her five-day snack pack makes her feel normal because she’s not sitting with all her friends when they’re pulling out their fun granola bars and fun things — she’s got a snack pack too," Harmon said.

She is full of heart, grace and passion for community, making her the perfect 7Everyday Hero.

"Volunteering for me has always made me feel better — given me a lift when I need it — and so creating this program selfishly helps me, but then has also helped me connect with amazing people who volunteer," Harmon said.

Molly Hendrickson anchors Denver7 in the mornings from 4:30-7 a.m. She also features a different 7Everyday Hero each week on Denver7. Follow Molly on Facebook here and Twitter here. To nominate a hero in your life, click here.