by: Abby Dacombe and Kat Anderson
The canned food drive is an annual community-wide service event led by Mt. Hebron’s SGA. This year, Mt. Hebron has expanded the event into the spring season. The drive lasted for three weeks in the month of April.
The event was focused on helping the less fortunate in our community by providing non-perishable foods and other important items, including toiletries. Donations were collected from teachers, students, their families, and even various businesses.
It gives students and other members of the community an easy and quick opportunity to give back to those in need. This season, individual clubs were tasked with giving specific items such as toiletries, birthday bags, and monetary donations.
“To keep people interested, people our age specifically, our club will focus on showing how easy it is to help and give to the CFD. It’s a very simple task that will help so many people in the long run,” said senior Morgan Amos, the president of the Mt. Hebron Scholars Leadership Program.
This new aspect of the drive allows Mt. Hebron leadership to spread the word for future canned food drives and other charity events that may be held. They hope to further Mt. Hebron’s reach in the community and help as many people as possible. The leader of Mt. Hebron’s Spanish Honor Society, senior Ramsha Chaudhary, elaborated on this in an interview.
“Often people honestly just forget that there are lots of opportunities out there to give back to their community, so I think a reminder would suffice to encourage people to keep donating items when they can.”
Due to the pandemic, the fall canned food drive was cut short in 2020. There was a lack of outreach normally given by school announcements and representatives. Ultimately, the goal of reaching 10,000 cans were not met. A reprisal in the spring season proved efficient in both outreach and results, and many more students participated this year.
Along with the SGA, Mt. Hebron’s Scholars Leadership Program, the Spanish Honor Society, and the Viking Service club worked together to help provide for the canned food drive and raise awareness.
“I think it’s important to always get involved with your school community, and in these times it’s hard to get involved fully. Our program is about service and giving back, so this CFD was a perfect opportunity for our girls to be involved and help our close community,” Amos said.
The Scholars Leadership program contributed birthday bags and baskets for the canned food drive. These bags included birthday cake mix, candles, sprinkles, and other birthday decorations.
Amos explains their purpose, “I think the biggest thing we will be able to do for the year when it comes to CFD is to try and promote as much as possible to friends and family out of our school community. And then also still contributing our service to it.”
Mt. Hebron’s Spanish Honors Society contributed by gathering as many materials as possible and spreading awareness. They will also be working to build up the Mt. Hebron food pantry. This club with the help of Chaudhary and the Mt. Hebron administrative team also expands the canned food drive further into the Mt. Hebron community.
“With everything being virtual this year, we were struggling to find ways to help out in our community in a meaningful way so we decided to try setting up a food drive at Hebron. SGA and the leadership classes were already planning a food drive, so we decided to join them in their efforts and make the food drive a community project.”
Mt. Hebron senior Haley Miller is the co-president of the Viking Service club and the student who helped found the new Mt. Hebron food pantry.
“A friend of mine and I started the food pantry last year because we wanted to offer easy access to food and hygiene items for students at Hebron who are in need. I am so excited that the spring canned food drive is allowing us to stock our pantry full so it can serve as a resource for students during the remainder of the school year and through the summer,” Miller stated.
This year, the Viking Service club put together toiletry bags for students. These bags contain things such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, and many more items. The hope is that less fortunate students will be able to make use of these items and stay healthy, especially during this pandemic.
This was just a small portion of the work going into the spring canned food drive at Mt. Hebron. Countless clubs, students, faculty, parents, and other community members put hours of work and effort into making the project a success despite the hardships of the pandemic, in the hopes that they will be able to help the people of our community.