Sandwiches are packed with a blessing

Students attending a summer program sponsored by the Bridgeport Rescue Mission will be eating breakfast and lunch this week courtesy of the Wilton Congregational Church.

Nine volunteers were at the church’s Pilgrim Hall on Ridgefield Road Monday morning, June 25, putting together 230 ham and cheese sandwiches that were packed in brown paper bags with an apple, a bag of chips, a drink, and condiments. The bags were sealed with a sticker that said “Have a Blessed Day” with the name of the church.

Later that morning they were delivered to a school at 20 West Street in South Norwalk, where the driver then takes them to five other schools in the program.

The volunteers will return Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to make fresh sandwiches for the rest of the week. No sandwiches are needed on Friday because the students go on a field trip.

The children participating in the program get a free lunch during the school year, but there is no free lunch program during the summer, the church’s Giff Broderick told The Bulletin on Monday. “The mission asks organizations to help with the program,” he said, and the Congregational Church has been doing so for at least the last six years. The church also pays the cost of breakfast for the children.

The church is first up for the eight-week schedule, and other organizations will follow.

“Other organizations may make a week’s sandwiches on Sunday and deliver them all at once,” he said, “but we like to make them each morning so they’re fresh.”

Monday and Wednesday are ham and cheese days while Tuesday and Thursday bring turkey and cheese.

Normally, Broderick said, children would be among the volunteers who are all church members, but the extended school year meant they were all in class through Wednesday.