We did it! 361,152 Meals packed for Haiti and the Philippines at the eleventh annual West Metro Pack-a-thon! "Be a hero, feed the world!"
Our 11th annual pack-a-thon,“Be a Hero, Feed the World,” is behind us. Reflecting on the past weekend, we can’t help but be reminded of the terror that happened across the world and the ongoing tragedies in our own backyards. These things can cause some of us to wonder where God is. But, even amid this tragedy, we are called to unite, serve, and spread light in this darkness. We are in awe of all of the heroes that came to help this weekend — from our community, our church and beyond.
We had superheroes of all sizes and ages participating, as individuals and groups. Our heroes weren’t all dressed in Batman and Superman costumes, and they didn’t have the ability to fly or have super gadgets to fight crime (although some did). Our heroes served as volunteers setting up, making forts of boxes, keeping track of meals packed, moving all of our heavy ingredients, serving behind the scenes in planning, preparing samples of our food, filling our kitchen with food for our leaders, helping at the registration and raffle tables, leading our packers and cleaning up. Our heroes came as families, birthday parties, Scout troops, confirmation groups, sports teams, individuals; kids and adults alike to pack over 361,000 meals for those in need in Haiti and the Philippines.
Friday night, we had many groups serving to help us reach a major landmark — 6 million meals packed since we began this organization. Viktor and two of the Vikings cheerleaders, Kelley and Jordan, were there to help us reach this goal and cheer us on, which was fun for all. We had young groups of Daisies, kids choosing to celebrate their birthday with friends by volunteering, and many more younger hands showing us that each and every hand makes a difference.
Saturday morning, more heroes arrived. We had help from large groups from Peace Lutheran and other trusty volunteers. They served as soon as they arrived and we were told by the person boxing up the meals they couldn’t even keep up! Saturday afternoon, we were behind schedule and were faced with empty stations. Heroes arrived and filled almost every spot, keeping us on we pace with our goal versus losing ground. We wrapped our day with families and groups committed to helping us reach our goal. A big sigh of relief and cheer erupted when we reached our 350,000 meal goal before our 2nd to last shift left. Our heroes came to our rescue and helped us give food to those in desperate need. Our final total for the weekend was 361,152 meals packed.
We as a group faced many obstacles behind the scenes this weekend as well. Our trusty past chairperson, Julie Kiefer, who has led us so well over the past 6 years, could not attend most of the pack-a-thon. Some of our leaders who have been with us for so long had scheduling conflicts or sick kids. The remaining group were reminded that this event is bigger than any of us. Some of us prayed and many members of our church prayed alongside us. Just 30 minutes after sending an emergency request for help to our church staff, we were reminded bigger powers were helping us along and prayers were answered.
Kids Against Hunger-West Metro is moving in a new direction over the next year. We continue to look for more leaders to grow our mission to pack the most life-saving meals possible and educate our community about the problem of hunger in the world. We will rebrand with a new name and ask you to walk alongside us, support us and continue to BE A HERO! A heartfelt thank you to all of our HEROES. Please contact us if you’re interested in helping us by serving more.