How to Help Erase School Lunch Debt Across the US

Over the last few years, the GoFundMe community has come together to raise nearly $750,000 from more than 200 campaigns in an effort to erase school lunch debt. With more than $150,000 raised in 2019 alone, community members across the U.S. continue to raise funds on GoFundMe to help pay off the accounts of children whose families couldn’t afford them. Some of these children would experience “lunch shaming” when in debt, where they’d be given cold food or even made to wear bracelets that would set them apart from other students.

The movement to eliminate lunch debt began with Seattle father Jeff Lew in 2017, who raised more than $50,000 to eliminate the lunch debt in the Seattle school district, and raised an additional $50,000 for the entire state of Washington. Since then, Jeff has inspired people across the country to start lunch debt GoFundMe campaigns in their own communities, from a 6-year-old girl in Idaho to an 85-year-old grandmother in California.

The public continues to take action to wipe out lunch debt all across the country, most recently after the Warwick Public School District, announced that students with an outstanding lunch balance would not be served the same hot meals offered to their classmates. The community quickly responded, donating over $100,000 in 48 hours, enough to wipe out all Warwick’s lunch debt.

Whether they have been inspired by a leader like Jeff Lew or simply frustrated after news reports about lunch debt, people all across the country are turning to GoFundMe to solve a problem in their community.

There’s still more work to be done.  See the fundraisers below to find a GoFundMe in your neighborhood, or start your own.

group of four young kids smiling
Warwick, RI
The Warwick Public School System has an outstanding balance of $77,000 for unpai...
Last donation 1yr ago
$57,407 raised of $77,000
$57,407 raised
Seattle, WA
Hello everyone! We've already wiped out over $100K in lunch debt as a team throu...
Last donation 1mo ago
$54,648 raised of $650,000
$54,648 raised
Washington, DC
The school district for Warwick, Rhode Island announced a new policy in which ...
Last donation 1yr ago
$47,971 raised of $100
$47,971 raised
Saint Paul, MN
Lunch debt is a problem that plagues schools across the nation, and our charter ...
Last donation 1yr ago
$14,864 raised of $15,000
$14,864 raised
Austin, TX
Friends and donors, please visit my NEW fundraiser at this link - LunchCounts2!...
Last donation 1yr ago
$10,767 raised of $10,000
$10,767 raised
Orange, CA
Hello everyone, this is Grandma Pat and I’ve started this GoFundMe campaign to...
Last donation 4mos ago
$10,090 raised of $11,000
$10,090 raised
Stow, OH
As of November 2018, nationwide over 73% of school lunches are served to kids wh...
Last donation 1yr ago
$9,275 raised of $9,000
$9,275 raised
Columbia, MD
Black Flag Brewing Company is starting our 'Brunch for Lunch' campaign! We want ...
Last donation 1yr ago
$6,539 raised of $15,000
$6,539 raised
Mustang, OK
This fundraiser will be an ongoing effort to keep Mustang, Oklahoma school distr...
Last donation 1yr ago
$3,850 raised of $10,000
$3,850 raised
Las Vegas, NV
We are a student organization at UNLV called CCLAF who fundraise to pay off brea...
Last donation 11mos ago
$1,620 raised of $31,000
$1,620 raised