Amanda Pascoe is Vice President of Finance for SDSU’s Associated Students and chair of the SDSU Fights Hunger project.
This year, one of Associated Students’ main goals is to focus on philanthropy and community service. Over the summer, Associated Students was asked to lead SDSU’s food drive for the San Diego Food Bank as part of the competition called “Colleges Rock Hunger,” between the local San Diego universities. I was more than happy to chair this important endeavor! To get a better understanding of what the SD Food Bank is and who they serve, I drove out to the Food Bank’s warehouse in Miramar. I was immediately taken back by the immense level of work that a small group of individuals there do.
I met with two of their staff members who explained all of the programs that they organize to meet the needs of the many different individuals around San Diego County. There was one program that made a deep impact on me and continues to stick with me. They created a program called “Food for Kids Backpack Program.” What teachers were seeing at elementary schools was that kids would run to the breakfast line on Monday mornings and then hoard as much food as possible on Friday afternoons. They realized that their Friday meal may be the only one that these children see all weekend. The San Diego Food Bank created this amazing program that helps these kids by giving them a bag of food that will help get them through the weekend. As I work to unite the campus and collect food, it is those children that I have in mind. They motivate me. This story touched my heart immediately. It is easy to take for granted what you have every day until you don’t have it anymore. Although I never experienced this type of hunger when I was younger, I want to help these children. They are our future, and without programs such as this one, they may never make it to experience the better things in life.
The San Diego Food Bank serves 340,000 San Diegans a month and in these tough economic times, that number is not expected to decrease any time soon. We have worked hard to make it as easy as possible for you to donate: bring a can from your shelf at home and drop it in one of the 80 red bins on campus, pick up an order form in one of the three main convenience stores, texting a $10 donation on your phone or clicking a link and donating from a virtual pantry. I hope you are inspired to tell your friends, family and co-workers to go out there and donate! Remember this is more than a competition between the San Diego universities; this is about helping our fellow San Diegans!