By Marty Bass

Hi everyone!

Let me show give you a scoop on the work of a TV newsroom. Covering what we in the news business call hard news–things like fires, murders, scams, tragedies–can take its toll on you. Our reporters, photographers and editors often see things we do not show you.

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You get the story in a professional manner, and it’s not like we cover anything up. But we are sensitive to families and friends of victims. We’re also sensitive to what is just too much for viewers. And some of the things we see cannot be unseen.

So, when a reporter or photographer, gets a chance to report about good things in the world, it’s a gift. It is an opportunity to realize that there are good people out there doing their very best to make a positive impact in our community. And that was the case on Thursday for K2 and I.

We got to visit the headquarters of Weekend Backpacks, where dozens of volunteers packed up bags of food. These packages will be distributed to more than 1,200 Baltimore City students to take home with them to make sure both they and their families have something to eat over the weekend. School breakfasts and lunches help during the week, but they only go so far. So when school is off on weekends, some students have no other option than to go hungry and miss multiple meals.

A little over seven years ago, Sanide Nagel decided to do something about children going hungry. To paraphrase Sandie, a hungry child cannot learn as well. So one night in her kitchen, she packed up 14 backpacks and, before she knew it, an organization was born.

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Today, that organization has more than 400 volunteers and some corporate partners. Weekend Backpacks sent thousands of pounds of food to 40 schools. Next week, it will be 44 schools. (By the way, the first distribution of the year includes a backpack contain six months worth of school supplies and personal hygiene products, along with the food.)

This program doesn’t stop over the summer, either. At that point, community and recreation centers take the place of schools but the program’s mission carries on. What’s even more remarkable is that the program never stopped, even during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Listen to the interviews with Sandie and hear her story. It is mentally cleansing and a nice reminder that good is around us 24/7. As always, be sure to check out the organization’s website for the full scoop. Additionally, there’s a way for you to contribute. On May 15, the group is hosting a miniature golf fundraiser at Tom Mitchell Golf from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., and you’re welcome to join.

I’ll leave you with one final note: a reporter and photographer are a team in the news business. Every day when we finished a “Where’s Marty?” segment, K2 and I fist bump and tell each other we did some good work, especially if we did–LOL! And on Friday, we continued that tradition but no words needed to be said. It was a great way to spend our morning.

– Marty B!

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