On any given day in Appalachia, you can find gifts left on front porches for the people inside: mushrooms just foraged, cookies freshly baked. The porch is an extension of the home in Appalachia—not only a gathering spot for conversation, but a traditional sharing place. If you want to exchange items or deliver food, you put them on a person's porch.
Now, because of COVID-19, these practices are becoming more important than ever. It’s not homemade food appearing on neighbor’s porches so much as home-sewn masks, or bags of groceries being left at the homes of senior citizens. And while school buses are no longer shuttling children to and from schools in the region, the buses are certainly not parked and empty.
In this article, writer Alison Stine from Yes Magazine examines how school bus drivers in the region are using Appalachia’s informal porch network to keep families fed and connected. Read the full article here.