Volunteers Working to End Hunger

On Sunday, March 11th, 365 volunteers came together at the Pequannock Valley Middle School in Pompton Plains, NJ to package 59,000 meals in a little over 3 hours. That is nearly 20,000 meals per hour or 327 meals per minute!

Why did these volunteers come together and where are these meals going?

Volunteers were middle school students and their families, Boy Scouts, members of a local church and other dedicated individuals. They heard about the event through their local community leaders and signed up for one hour shifts to take part in the fight to end hunger. As a result, half of the meals were donated to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey and the other half were sent to three cities in Haiti. All of the meals were made to help deserving people in need who are struggling to put food on the table.

The meal packaging event was the result of two California-based nonprofits working together, Always Positive and Friends and Family Community Connection (FFCC). After co-hosting an event in San Diego in October 2011 where 134,000+ meals were packed by 1,400 volunteers, the team decided to co-host an event in northern New Jersey where the majority of food pantries had yet to return to their pre-Hurricane Irene levels. Both events were so successful and had so many dedicated volunteers that plans are underway to organize numerous meal-packing events across the country.

The number of volunteers who turned out and the number of bags filled with freeze-dried rice, soy, vegetables and vitamins did not solely have an impact on the fight against hunger. In line with Always Positive’s mission to inspire people and organizations to “Be Positive” and motive them to “Do Something Positive”, it was widely felt on Sunday that new friendships were formed, families grew closer through volunteering together, a town and community were united and there was positive re-enforcement that one person can make a difference in our world.

2 thoughts on “Volunteers Working to End Hunger

  1. “Thanks for the great post let’s keep it going we truly can change the world one child, adult individual at a time. In planning and preparing for this event I could not of in my wildest imagination dreamed up the impact that it had on the volunteers, endless smiles, old friends being re-united, new friendships established, new dreams being created, spirits uplifted, I can only begin to imagine the ripple affect let alone children who will now have a nutritional meal, and the impact it will have on those in need here in the US and over sea’s.” William Michaels Event coordinator, AP volunteer.

  2. The subject matter discussed here not only is relevant, it is paramount to speading the understanding that – even in this ‘modern age’ – so many people, young and old, are still deprived of one of the basic necessities of life…healthful, nutritous meals. We are one of the most advanced nations in the world on countless levels, yet we have people hungry and unable to acquire food on a daily basis in virtually every state in our country. If we cannot conquer this devastating problem, we truly must ask ourselves why. There are many people out there who dedicate their lives to ‘saving the world’ – a seemingly impossible feat – yet the volunteers described in this post are doing just that – one volunteer and one meal at a time. I am inspired by each of you and I hope that others are, as well. I know that I will be looking for ways in my community to make an impact just as you have done and thank you for your dedication and your spirit – not only to those in need in our country, but to those who are in need around our world. Each of you truly are an inspiration.

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