As the year comes to a close, many students with meal plans are finding themselves, as they do every year, with a lot of extra money that they probably won’t use. In the past, students have used this money to stock up on snacks to take home for the summer, but more often than not, students end up not using most of the money they have left over from their meal plan. Using this meal plan money to donate food to a food pantry was a suggestion that often came up in conversations. Fortunately, this RHA program has made this a successful reality. An alternative solution was made available to students through the option of buying non-perishable food items and donating them to Centre Street Food Pantry.
Screenshot by Itzel Ayala
Last week on April 22nd a Facebook event titled ‘’Extra Dining Dollars Food Donation” was created by the Residence Hall Administration (RHA) and made public to the BC student body. All items can be purchased at the dining halls and given to donation at the designated times set up by the RHA. The donations are given to the Centre Street Food Pantry located at Trinity Church, just a mile from the Newton Campus.
James Gallo CSOM 2014, the Vice President of RHA, said of the program, “some of the buzz we heard among students this year was the desire for a chance to give back to the community with the excess dining dollars they would never be able to spend by the end of the year. As a result, the RHA began to explore the potential for a food donation program at the end of the year. We wanted to give students the opportunity to actually purchase an item and donate it to a local food pantry.”
The first event was a trial run on Newton Campus. Gallo parked his car outside of the dining hall and he and fellow RHA volunteers loaded the car as much as possible with any donations they could take. In just one hour, they had collected 552 food items. All 552 items had to be carried, inventoried, and signed off by the food pantry. It was with the enormous contribution from volunteers that Emyr Remy A&S 2014, Hannah Chambles A&S 2015, Stephen Arena CSOM 2016, and Anthony Goodwin CSOM 2014 executed this trial run as smoothly and successfully as it did.
Courtesy of James Gallo
Due to the success of the first event, the volunteers are now preparing to host a second event on Friday, May 3rd at Lower dining hall from 4pm to 5pm. The Facebook event instructions are as follows: “Attention anyone looking to use their extra dining dollars for a good cause: Look for the blue Subaru and the large RHA banner and donate any of these items between 4pm to 5pm on Friday."
This event owes its success to the students who made the donations as well as the students who put this whole thing together. This is a great example of BC students showing an overwhelming generosity and participating in the call to help and serve others. “My ultimate goal is to overfill my car to the point we need to either make multiple trips or we need to enlist another persons car. The sky is the limit with generosity of BC students and this program serves as am opportunity to do so,” said Gallo.
For more information on this event, visit the Extra Dining Dollars Food Donation Facebook event page here.