The Snoqualmie Valley’s Disney Princess

I was never a big Disney princess fan growing up. My tastes ran more towards the villains like Maleficent or Cruella Deville, but now as an adult, I have a new favorite princess. Her name is Sarai Childs of the Snoqualmie Valley magical kingdom.

No, really, she IS a Disney princess.

As part of World Princess Week in late August, Childs was chosen as one of Disney’s Magic Makers. One of four women who either answered the call to help when their communities were in need, fought for those whose voice wasn’t strong enough or made every moment a magical experience.[1]

Sarai became an influential leader when the COVID-19 pandemic struck the Snoqualmie Valley.

According to Disney, “The small business champion organized an incredible PPE drive that has given away over 2,000,000 masks, 50,000 bottles of hand sanitizer, and 600 hand sanitation stations, allowing hundreds of small businesses to safely reopen their doors. Sarai took her prowess a step further and oversaw the efforts of 40 vaccination clinics that, in total, provided 25,000 vaccines to members in her community.

Wow!

Childs is a key member of both the Governor’s pandemic committee and the King County pandemic committee and pushed for relief for small businesses around the region.

With her knowledge of the healthcare industry and her understanding of the needs of local citizens, she pushed for telehealth to be provided without copays by healthcare providers across Washington and accomplished that goal.

As free resources, she provided webinars attended by hundreds of business leaders and provided regular updates regarding COVID-19, PPP, and general business guidance, which impacted thousands of small businesses in the region. Through these communication channels, she grabbed the bull by the horns and created a PPE distribution monster. 

Sarai is a force. Her business ventures should require four full-time employees to accomplish what she does. But in her ‘spare time,’ she also runs the Backpack Program, a nonprofit program that feeds kids in the Snoqualmie Valley.

The Backpack Program packs bags of food designed to sustain a child for an entire weekend (or an entire week during the school breaks) and hands out those bags of food to needy kids. Before the pandemic, the weekly need was 150 bags, and the delivery method was through the school system.

Once the pandemic started and schools were shut down, everything changed. Sarai took charge and transformed the donation and distribution model to engage and rally the community.

Nearly overnight, the program went from a handful of volunteers to multiple teams of people who packed bags, delivered bags and raised $30,000 during the worst economic downturn in the country’s history.

At the height of the pandemic, the weekly need skyrocketed to over 550 bags and held that level for quite a few weeks. Despite these challenges, the Backpack Program thrived and became stronger and more sustainable than before the pandemic – all under the leadership of Sarai Childs. 

The Backpacks Program could still use all our help! This program provides breakfast and lunch food/snacks bags for 170 kids in the Snoqualmie Valley each week who otherwise wouldn’t have food over the weekend or would struggle to get that food.

In the wake of COVID, that number has risen to 400-500 per weekend. Your family can create bags together for less than $5 a bag (and probably less if you price shop a bit) for 12 bags.

You can get involved in many ways:

  • Pack bags from home – use the packing list and contact their Packing from Home, Serving Kids! Facebook group admin for pickup.
  • Donate to the program.
  • Buy food from the packing list (kid food) and drop-off at Life Community Church, or other locations around the Valley.

The items they need are:

  • Peanut Butter/Jelly (in plastic jars only)
  • Crackers (Ritz, Saltines, Graham, etc)
  • Mac-N-Cheese/Cup of Noodles/Top Ramen
  • Instant Oatmeal Packets
  • Hot Chocolate Packets
  • Granola Bars/Protein Bars
  • Microwave Popcorn
  • Individually Packaged Snacks and Crackers
  • Fruit Snacks/Fruit Leather
  • Canned Fruit
  • Soup (Chicken Noodle or other kid-friendly soups)
  • Chili /Ravioli /SpaghettiOs’s
  • Individual Juice drinks
  • Water

Winter Needs

  • Cereal
  • Shelf Stable Milk
  • Individual Chips/Pretzels/Popcorn
  • Pudding
  • Tuna Salad or chicken Salad Kits
  • Applesauce

According to Disney, to celebrate the magic she’s sparked, Sarai will enjoy a one-year subscription to Disney+ and a trip to Walt Disney World Resort to celebrate the “Year’s Most Magical Celebration.” 

Your Snoqualmie Valley Kingdom thanks you for all your hard work!


[1] Celebrate Newest Disney Magic Makers In Honor of World Princess Week | Disney Parks Blog (go.com)

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