Fundraiser aids Oregon Food Bank

by: REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - LOHS junior Allison Kantor examines some of the bowls that she and her classmates made for the event.Students gave a boost to people who needed it and fed community members during Lake Oswego High School’s Empty Bowls event last week.

Serving up a local take of a national program is an LOHS tradition and necessitates a major Lakers collaboration. Organizing the event was the political action seminar class, an elective allowing upperclassmen to spearhead projects to develop citizenship and leadership skills.

Ceramics students crafted 110 bowls. The foods and nutrition classes prepared chicken noodle soup to fill the fired clay dishes, and the local Saint Honoreé Bakery donated 15 baguettes to round out the meal.

“It was delicious,” said Allison Kantor, a member of the political action seminar REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - LOHS junior Will Bryan dishes up soup at the event.

Students sold 45 bowls, raising $455 for the Oregon Food Bank. The food bank provides emergency food to hungry people via a statewide network of agencies. Students are looking into selling the remaining bowls at the farmers market, said Kantor, a junior.

“I think we did a lot better than we were thinking we would do,” Kantor said. “I was really happy to make any money because any money we made helps people who are in need.”

For every $10 donation, the food bank can provide 30 meals to hungry people in Oregon and Clark County, Wash., according to the nonprofit organization’s website.

LOHS last hosted Empty Bowls two years ago, but the seniors who organized it graduated. The next crop of students didn’t hold the event in 2012, but they didn’t give up. This year, they made it happen.

Whether Kantor is in the political action seminar class or not next year, she intends to advise other students because putting the fundraiser together can be challenging. She added that she also wants to encourage the creation of an awareness campaign in 2014 to spur event participation and to inspire student interest in the hunger issue.

On average, 270,000 people per month eat from emergency food boxes at one of the food bank’s partner agencies. About 92,000 of them are children, according to the food bank’s website. Since the beginning of 2008, food box distribution has risen 41 percent.

“We’re so fortunate in Lake Oswego,” Kantor said. “We don’t really see (the effects of hunger) as much.”

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