More than 1,000 bagged lunches and breakfasts are going out to Brainerd Public Schools students each day while schools are shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

EMBED:

Essentia Health St. Joseph's Baxter Clinic registered nurse Jessica Schwartz talks to a patient in the COVID-19 drive-thru clinic Monday, March 23, in the clinic's parking lot. Patients are required to complete an e-visit before coming for a test. A doctor will issue an order, which is presented at the tent. Testing began Monday and will continue indefinitely. Steve Kohls / Brainerd Dispatch

Essentia Health St. Joseph's Baxter Clinic registered nurse Jessica Schwartz talks to a patient in the COVID-19 drive-thru clinic Monday, March 23, in the clinic's parking lot. Patients are required to complete an e-visit before coming for a test. A doctor will issue an order, which is presented at the tent. Testing began Monday and will continue indefinitely. Steve Kohls / Brainerd Dispatch

Four school sites — Garfield, Forestview, Riverside and Washington — are offering free bagged meals to all children 18 years old and younger who need them during this time.

Food Service Director Alissa Thompson said Monday, March 23, the program has been going very well so far. Last Friday, she said 1,473 bagged meals went out to students. And so far, 169 meals have been delivered to those who are homebound or vulnerable.

Meals are available for pickup 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each weekday through Friday at the four sites. Those who would like meals delivered should call the transportation department at 218-454-6900.

After Friday, Thompson said more information will come if the program needs to continue.

As a public service, we've opened this article to everyone regardless of subscription status.