Teens Needed to Help Package 10,000 Meals

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

Teens Needed to Help Package 10,000 Meals to Help Feed the Hungry in the Quad Cities on August 20!

University of Illinois Extension-Rock Island County is partnering with Illini Fighting Hunger to package 24,000 meals that will stay in the Quad Cities community and will be distributed by the RiverBend Food bank. There will be a special youth service opportunity open to teens ages 12 to 18 who would like to help fight hunger in their community by packaging 10,000 meals.  It will take place on Tuesday, August 20 at the QCCA Expo Center, 2621 4th Ave., Rock Island, IL during two shifts: 5:00 – 6 p.m., and 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. The 14,000 additional meals will be packaged on Wednesday, August 21st during the United Way Day of Caring by adult volunteers.

The food packaging event is part of the Feeding and Growing our Communities project that Rock Island County 4-H initiated this summer after receiving a $2,500 grant from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.  The purpose was to empower youth to end hunger in their communities through service projects that address community-based food security and hunger relief.  By giving young people the opportunity to witness that hunger is a serious issue in their own community, it may lead to increased involvement and advocacy to reduce the amount of people that go hungry on a daily basis. “Since service projects began in early June 2013, the teens involved with the Ambassador project have volunteered over 70 hours of service toward this cause.” said Kelly Farina, an Augustana student intern who led the program this summer.  The teens volunteer projects included working in community gardens, preparing and serving meals at local shelters, assisting in meal packaging, volunteering at food pantries and organizing this food packaging event.

“We are still in need a lot of teens to lend a helping hand to put these meals together on August 20”, said Farina.  “We need 60 teens to give just one hour of their time and we can provide 10,000 meals to help reduce hunger right here in the Quad Cities.”  Teens can register online at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/hmrs and register under the Food Packaging Community Service Volunteer or call University of Illinois Extension at (309) 756-9978.  The information is also on the Rock Island County 4-H facebook page.

Funding and support for this project, organized by University of Illinois Extension, is provided by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, Modern Woodmen of America, Illini Fighting Hunger, United Way of the Quad Cities Area, and the QCCA Expo Center.