Photo credits: M. Lagocki/YouCaring.com
Prior to being unlawfully murdered by a rogue, state-sponsored officer of the law, Philando Castile was a caring cafeteria supervisor at J.J. Hill Montessori, a public school in St. Paul, Minnesota.
The young children at J.J. Hill Montessori affectionately called Castile “Mr. Phil.” In his job as a cafeteria supervisor, Castile exemplified his genuine care for the public school students at J.J. Hill Montessori. Times can get hard for children who eat reduced lunch that come from lower middle-class families.
As unfathomable as it sounds in the so-called “greatest nation in the history of the world,” there are children in public schools who are starving simply because they cannot pay their school lunch costs. Castile understood this and would frequently go into his own pocket to help out children who had debts associated with their school lunches.
After Castile’s death in July of 2016, Pam Fergus, a professor at Minnesota’s Inver Hills Community College came up with an idea to keep the slain humanitarian’s legacy of helping school children alive. In an interview with WCCO-4, a CBS News affiliate in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Fergus talked about the Philando Feeds the Children Fund.
“His death changed who I am,” Fergus told WCCO-4 in her exclusive interview.
Fergus’ original plan for implementing the Philando Feeds the Children Fund involved raising $5,000 dollars to clear all school lunch debts held by children who attend schools in the St. Paul public school district. However, that goal was nearly achieved in a week.
“I thought a $5,000 goal was enormous but people are amazing,” Fergus also said. The professor also said she spoke with Castile’s mother Valerie about her plans. Fergus claimed she received the full support of Castile’s mother. “She said the only thing I want for my son is for people to remember him with honor and dignity,” Fergus added.
To date, the Philando Feeds the Children Fund has raised $50,000 dollars. Money is being raised via a crowdfunding effort on the You Caring philanthropic online platform.