students may have the day off of school on Friday, but some are using their extra time to make a big difference.
Hope High School hosts their seventh annual Empty Bowls service-learning project on Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Empty bowls is an international project to help raise awareness and fight hunger.
The event is open to the public. For an $8 donation, guests receive a meal of soup and bread and are welcome take home a handmade ceramic bowl.
“It’s a visual to remind people that there are children and families that go hungry even in our own country,” Hope High Principal Kim Bertram said, explaining the symbolic importance of the empty handmade bowls.
All donations collected at the fundraiser will benefit the Food Pantry.
Bertram said last year’s Empty Bowls event raised around $1,000. She hopes this year they can raise even more.
“These donations go to the food pantry, which services people in the O’Fallon area to help them stretch their budgets and get them through a difficult time,” Bertram said.
Each year since 2004, Hope High faculty and students work together to organize Empty Bowls.
Teachers incorporate the issue of hunger into their curriculum to coincide with the service project and students learn about the impact, statistics and what they can do as an individual to help the hungry.
According to Bertram, around 20 students have volunteered to help with Empty Bowls on Friday.
Students in Family and Consumer Science (FACS) classes prepare the food and the art classes make the ceramic bowls. Some students will share a song, poem or short story in the auditorium.
The Student Council, Empowering Young Women group and leadership class will help set up, serve guests and clean up the event.
Bertram said while Empty Bowls is a great way to give back—it is also a valuable experience for students.
“It’s a tremendous benefit for students because they are being active members of their community,” she said. “They’re learning what it means to be a citizen and contribute in a positive way.”
Hope High School is located at 307 W. Pitman in O’Fallon. For more information call 636-379-5300.