Thanksgiving Drive Helps Hungry, Homeless

Chaminade Julienne will be providing tangible help to those who need it most this holiday season thanks to generous community-wide support for the school’s annual Thanksgiving donation drive.

During the week of Nov. 18-25, students raised $2,682.58 for Oxfam International and Catholic Relief Services, and collected 2,271 non-perishable items for St. Vincent de Paul and The Foodbank.

The drive is just one part of a six-day event known as Hunger and Homeless Awareness Week (HHAW). This year’s efforts were focused around Jesus' words to Peter in John 21:17: "Feed my sheep." Each day began with communal morning music, a prayer and a quote about hunger or homelessness. In addition, service learning and co-curricular activities allowed students, faculty and staff to take an active role in caring for the plight of others. 

The week’s activities included:

  • Special presentations and visits by guests including: Kathie Stevens, a dietician from Good Samaritan Hospital; Dr. Dennis Heldman, professor of food science at Ohio State and a CJ STEMM Idol Speaker; and Sr. Rita Sturwold (pictured right), SNDdeN, U.S. director of mission integration.
  • A Hunger Banquet hosted Tuesday by members of FLIGHT (pictured above) and Marianist LIFE. Sixty students were randomly divided into three groups and fed meals of varying nutritional value and proportion depending solely on the luck of the draw. The event is designed to demonstrate the differences between those living in poverty and prosperity in our world.
  • A faculty and staff service project in the cafeteria and Foods Lab before school Wednesday morning. Volunteers packed lunches to donate to St. Vincent de Paul and cooked a hot meal for the House of Bread.
  • A REACH service site visit after school Wednesday to The FoodBank, where students packed take-home meals in Good-to-Go Backpacks for children.
  • And an optional “Fast Day” for all members of the school community on Thursday. Those who abstained from all or part of a meal in order to be in solidarity with the hungry could pack lunches for St. Vincent in the cafeteria during lunch periods instead of eating. Religion teachers were invited to teach mini-lessons about the tradition of fasting in their classrooms.