WHS Students Help Feed Starving Children In Third World Countries

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news - Kaitlyn Feed My Starving Children 1by Kaitlyn Culpepper

This past weekend, October 10th-12th, hundreds of inhabitants of Frederick worked to provide food for thousands of malnourished children in third world countries.

Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit Christian organization that has been taking on world hunger since its founding in 1987. It helps send food to 70+ countries that then is used in schools, hospitals, orphanages, and feeding programs. Around 800,000 volunteers worked to pack over 191.6 million meals last year through FMSC.

FMSC has MobilePack which allows various businesses, schools, churches, and the like to host the food-packing events. FMSC provides logistics and some assistance while the local group takes care of funding and the actual labor involved. Last weekend, the First Baptist Church of Frederick partnered with Feed My Starving Children to hold a MobilePack event with the goal of producing 100,000 volunteer-prepared meals to make a dent in world hunger.

The gym/chapel area of FBC Frederick was converted for the event to follow all FDA regulations for food packing. Different stations were set up and given table numbers, and there was friendly competition between tables to see which group could pack the most boxes of food.

All volunteers had to remove any jewelry on their person, wear hairnets, and disinfect their hands. Those who were scooping food (rice, soy, vegetables, and vitamin powder make up a MannaPack meal) had to wear gloves as well. There were also volunteers hard at work refilling food bins, carrying completed boxes back and forth, and labeling boxes as well.

Several students of Walkersville High School, including myself, participated in the event. Sophomore Ashley Wilcom said, “When I first signed up, I’m not going to lie, it was to earn some community service hours. I didn’t believe it when everyone told me that it was fun because it sounds like the farthest thing from fun. But it actually was. Although, the best part was knowing that I helped make a difference. Plus it felt really good to do something selfless for once.”

With upbeat music in the background and everyone in a good, positive attitude as they packed, it truly was fun. Sophomore Kaitlyn Oberhaus added, “In a short two hours with Feed My Starving Children you are able to make a big difference in children’s lives. During the session I went to I helped feed 99 kids for a year.”

It did help make everyone feel the impact they were having when the FMSC representative at the event told each session group about how many kids they had just helped feed for a year. I actually did the math while I was there for my station specifically, during our 11:30am to 1:30pm time slot. I found that we had packed 24 boxes of 36 MannaPacks, each containing 6 meals, and so my table alone packed 5,184 meals, or enough to feed 14 children every day for a year.

As for the entire event held at FBC this past weekend, here are some of the facts:

413 volunteers (some as young as four years old) came out to join the effort. A total of 468 boxes were packed. Each box contained 36 MannaPacks and each MannaPack contained six meals.     468 x 36 x 6 = 101,066 meals.  That is enough to feed approximately 277 children EVERY day for a full year.

After each session, a little shop set up for the event was opened to the volunteers. It featured different products sold through FMSC as well as some that were hand-made by Haitian women. Proceeds went towards Feed My Starving Children and extra donations were accepted at the cash register as well. If you’re interested in purchasing any items though FMSC or in donating money to the cause, you can visit http://www.fmscmarketplace.org/.

Feed My Starving Children always comes to our area at least once a year, and so if anyone missed out this time but is interested, the opportunity will come back around. I would definitely suggest it as a way to spend a couple of hours on a Saturday that is both impactful and fun. Sophomore Anna Sepanic said, “It was an amazing experience! I’m so grateful that I had the chance to be a part of it!”

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