By: Nancy Hastings
THE HILLSDALE DAILY NEWS
HILLSDALE – Packaging meals for children in Haiti was a campus-wide event Sunday afternoon at Hillsdale College.
The GOAL Program partnered with Numana, Inc. and student groups across campus to organize an all-school volunteer meal packing event in the Biermann Athletic Center.
GOAL Coordinator Lu Townley said there were 125 students who registered online to help out with the event, with another 16 leaders in green shirts who facilitated the process.
Freshman Michaela Peine had volunteered to be a leader since she had worked with a similar project in Minnesota called Feed My Children.
“I will be the next GOAL coordinator, so I helped Lu and director Allison Decker this time,” Peine said, noting it was a privilege to do something for others in need.
The goal was for all of campus to be involved, which included Greek homes, sports teams and other organizations on campus.
“We did fundraising beforehand raising $6,000 for the project,” Townley said. “All funds have been met for the project.”
Representing Numana, Morgan Bohnder said the money raised pays for shipping the food to Haiti and the truck and equipment for the event.
Numana is a non-profit public charity formed in August 2008, as an international hunger relief organization benefiting the needy worldwide, including Mission of Hope. The event will provide 20,000 meals for children in Haiti, which is enough to feed 80 students for an entire year.
GOAL Advisor Rebekah Dell said the event is the largest school service event campus-wide.
“It’s a busy time of year, but the event is so well organized by Numana that students can come in and give 45 minutes to something that makes a big impact,” Dell said. “We encourage students to have an eye and heart toward service.”
After putting on aprons and hair nets, volunteers approached the tables in groups as their team leaders first explained the process. The meals were prepared in 10 table stations making up an assembly line of 10-12 per station. Volunteers measured the ingredients with scoops, and filled and sealed the bags as teams.
Sarah Strubing (right) explains the process of sealing bags to Jenny Lessnau during a campus wide food packing event at Hillsdale College Sunday afternoon. (NANCY HASTINGS PHOTO)
Serving as a team leader for the Chi Omegas at table number two was senior Sarah Strubing, who demonstrated the process, emphasizing the need to seal the bags completely before passing them on for packing. She pointed out that a Numana meal has four different ingredients: rice, soy, beans for added protein, and chicken flavoring providing 21 vitamins targeted to help the immune system.
Checking each bag at the end of the assembly line, senior Maddy Reed said she came to help since her sisters at Chi Omega had asked for volunteers and she thought it would be a fun project with a bit of competition.
“We wanted a team event that was fun to do and I figured it was a good way to do something for others while having a fun time hanging out with friends,” Reed said.
Some faculty members and those associated with the college also showed up to help.
To date, Numana events have benefited children and families in the United States of America, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Haiti, Vietnam, El Salvador, Malawi, Honduras, Colombia, South Africa, Rwanda, Philippines, Liberia and Zambia, with hopes of reaching more.
Townley said she would like to alternate the project with things that can be done in the Hillsdale community.
“The GOAL organization focuses on philanthropy and this project is all going overseas,” Townley said. “I would like to alternate years, seeing us do something for the Hillsdale community in as large of a scale as this.”
She is looking for ideas for some possible causes and invites comments at: email@example.com.