Operation Sandwich names new fiscal host


A new community partnership served up last month is proving to be the next best thing since sliced bread.

In early February, Bridges of Hope assumed responsibility as fiscal agent for the Operation Sandwich program previously hosted by the Lakes Area United Way. Operation Sandwich is a grassroots program designed to help end childhood hunger by feeding kids when free and reduced meals are not accessible at school.

Kim Rollins, executive director of the Lakes Area United Way, said to continue support of Operation Sandwich without financial conflicts, her organization deemed it best to look for a local fiscal host and partner whose programming aligned with the cause.

“We found the mission and direction of Bridges of Hope to be a perfect fit and we are delighted to see them take this program forward,” Rollins said, noting the transfer of responsibility will now allow Operation Sandwich to participate in grant opportunities offered through the United Way. “We are very confident in the new direction of this program and are proud of our community partnerships that are making a difference in our community.”

Despite the change of hands in fiscal responsibility, collaborations with Brainerd Public Schools and local churches, including Lutheran Church of the Cross in Nisswa and Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Brainerd, remain.


The Rev. Sarah Marshall - Children, Youth and Family Ministry pastor at Bethlehem Lutheran Church - is grateful to not only be affiliated with the community-enriching program, but also that it will continue to be carried out with a bright future and endless possibilities to serve.

“Operation Sandwich is delighted and excited to partner with Bridges of Hope,” Marshall said. “We’re looking forward to many years of feeding people in the Brainerd lakes area and give thanks for United Way and their partnership as our fiscal agent these past few years.”

Bridges of Hope CEO and Executive Director Bernadette Foh said the timing of the transition came prior to the escalation of COVID-19 in Minnesota; however, her organization stands at the ready to deploy resources and serve local communities during these difficult times.

“Our organization is excited for this new collaboration and partnership with Operation Sandwich,” Foh said. “We’re now working diligently on the integration of this great program into our existing programming.”

Financial and food donations are especially in demand at this time. Food needs include canned fruit and vegetables, fresh apples and oranges, macaroni and cheese, canned soups and pastas, boxed dinners, breakfast cereal and granola bars.

Financial contributions can be made by visiting .

Travis Grimler began work at the Echo Journal Jan. 2 of 2013 while the publication was still split in two as the Pine River Journal and Lake Country Echo. He is a full time reporter/photographer/videographer for the paper and operates primarily out of the northern stretch of the coverage area (Hackensack to Jenkins).
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