Meals Plus’ official mascot, Graham, has been traveling to child nutrition trade shows, software implementations, and vacationing with the Meals Plus Family for years. But recently, he’s been spending a lot of time in the lunchroom – and that’s turning into increased participation for Bladen County Schools (NC).
When Graham first visited Bladen County’s elementary schools, he was just a flat, cardboard cutout. But the students still loved him. Amy Stanley, the district’s Director of School Nutrition Services, said, “I’ve never seen anything like it, the students flipped for him! They wanted to hug him, talk to him, and they said they wanted to eat in the cafeteria because of Graham. That’s when I knew we could really do something special with Graham in our lunchrooms.”
Graham with his friends at Dublin Primary School’s Pre-K Class.
Graham has his own chair in the lunchline!
Together with the Meals Plus Marketing Team, Amy introduced Graham to her students in the form of a three-dimensional, plush doll. The students love Graham so much, he’s now a permanent fixture in their elementary school cafeterias. Amy’s staff sets Graham up on their breakfast cart in the morning, and on the serving line during lunch, and the schools conducted a Graham coloring contest. And when Amy generated reports in her Meals Plus child nutrition software, she found that by including Graham in her lunchrooms, her elementary schools had a 5% increase in breakfast and lunch participation.
It makes sense for Graham to be there. He’s a student in the lunchline, and excited to eat a healthy meal prepared by a loving cafeteria staff. We look forward to seeing how Graham can continue to help Bladen County Schools and all Meals Plus customers across the country increase their participation!
If you’d like Graham to come visit your school district, email him and he will make travel plans to see you!