PALM BEACH (CBSMiami) – A real estate agent took it upon himself to buy off all the outstanding school lunch debt in Jupiter.
When Andrew Levy learned that $944.34 was the total outstanding lunch debt for all nine Jupiter area schools, he decided it was a small price to pay to make a big difference in a life of a child.
“I went in there and I said ‘I want to pay off the lunch debt’,” he said.
Levy is a real estate agent in Palm Beach Gardens, but the majority of his business is conducted in the Jupiter area, and he says he quickly fell in love with the community when he moved to South Florida five years ago.
Levy said when he learned that more than 400 kids in his community couldn’t get a full meal in their school cafeterias, he felt he had to take action.
“These children that were in debt were going to either not eat or they would get just cheese sandwiches and I thought that’s crazy,” he said. “I thought you know something? If for a modest sum I could make that change, I’m gonna do it.”
Levy said had no agenda, no children in the district and no personal connection to the schools but he knew he could make a difference, so he just made it happen.
“Food is something that you shouldn’t have to think about. Children shouldn’t have to learn hungry,” he said.
After he paid the bills and brought the families back to “zero,” Levy posted about it on Facebook and soon hundreds of people commented, asking if they could contribute next time too. Before he knew it, Levy’s act of kindness started a chain reaction across Palm Beach County.
“I even have had some clients over the past 48 hours say ‘you know something, I want to help, I want to give too,” he said. “Every quarter I’m going to do either a GoFundMe page or a fundraising page that can raise money every quarter so the lunch debt never accumulates,” he said.
While Levy’s contribution made a major impact in Jupiter, a school district spokesperson said that the total outstanding lunch debt across Palm Beach County is still sitting at $51,000. To learn more about how you can help or to make a contribution, visit the district website.