Food drive a great way for youth to discover joys of giving

Published 8:00 am Wednesday, September 23, 2015

It’s not a very difficult task to find a Dowagiac kid in orange.

Heck, all you needed to do was stop by Chris Taylor Alumni Field last Friday to see nearly an entire stadium filled with the vibrant color.

So, despite the fact that it probably won’t prove to be all that much of a challenge, the staff with the district’s food services department are asking kids to show up to school this Friday wearing the Chieftain’s favorite shade.

In this case though, the children draped in the orange will be displaying more than just their school spirit.

This week, Sodexo, the district’s food vendor, is sponsoring Dowagiac’s participation in the national “End It With Orange” food drive, a part of Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry program. From Monday through Friday, students are encouraged to bring canned and nonperishable food items to school, which will be collected by food services and donated to the ACTION center food pantry.

The week concludes on Friday, when students are encouraged to wear orange in support of the food drive.

Now in its second year in Dowagiac, the food drive is a great way for kids to make a difference in their communities — and in the lives of many of their classmates.

According to the No Kid Hungry campaign, 16 million — or one out of every five — children in America live in households where hunger is an issue. Performance in school is often impacted as a result, as kids are understandably more worried about where their next meal will be coming from rather than studying for the big test coming up.

For Dowagiac families, the issue is very prevalent. With nearly three-quarters of all students living within the school district qualifying for free or reduced lunch prices, many local families benefit greatly from the service that ACTION and other local food pantries provide to them.

By simply bringing in a couple of extra cans of soups from cupboard into school this week, local kids doing their part to help out. It’s an easy, effortless way to get involved, and many of the people benefiting from their charity will be the boys and girls they see everyday at class.

We encourage kids and their parents to help out with this week’s food drive, to do their part to “End It With Orange”…Chieftains style!


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.