Thursday, November 15, 2018

MEALS OF HOPE

Event Yields 250,000 Meals to Fight Local Hunger

Marco Island Academy helps out.

Marco Island Academy helps out.

On Saturday, November 4th, the Marco

Island Charter Middle School gymnasium was filled with excitement as 528 enthusiastic volunteers participated in the 10th annual

Meals of Hope event. The effort was spearheaded by three of Marco

Island’s service organizations: the Sunrise Rotary Club, the

Noontime Rotary Club, and the Kiwanis Club. Throughout the year the groups, led by Bill “Captain Happy Hope” Morris, held Happy Hours for Hope fundraisers and collected donations. They achieved their goal of raising $50,000, the amount needed to provide 250,000 meals to feed the local hungry children.

“Unfortunately, we do have homeless people in the area. Today, we are packaging pasta and tomato sauce fortified with 19 vitamins and minerals. All they need is a pot of water to prepare their meal,” explains Bobbi Bird, Rotary District Governor and Community Relations Manager of Meals of Hope.

Bobbi Bird, Rotary District Governor and Community Relations Manager for Meals of Hope

Bobbi Bird, Rotary District Governor and Community Relations Manager for Meals of Hope

In just two short hours, the volunteers, working at a frenzied pace, packed an astonishing 250,000 ready-made meals. During that time, the gymnasium looked and sounded more like a party as a DJ pumped upbeat music and kept the volunteers dancing and cheering as they packaged the meals. Local groups, organizations, schools, churches, and families participated in the well-organized, unifying effort to fight hunger.

Volunteer Mary Bryan

Volunteer Mary Bryan

“This is my second year participating. I’m here today with my Women’s Bible Study from Capri Christian Church. It is such an inspiring and touching event to be a part of,” expresses Jan Butz.

Following the packaging event, the meals were distributed to local food pantries as part of the Feeding America effort.

For more information about Meals of Hope, go to: www.mohmi.org.

Marco Island Police Chief Al Schettino (left) and volunteer Jim Richards.

Marco Island Police Chief Al Schettino (left) and volunteer Jim Richards.

Lely National Honor Society student, Leah Pearce

Lely National Honor Society student, Leah Pearce

Natalia Armstrong, President of the Marco Island Sunrise Rotary

Natalia Armstrong, President of the Marco Island Sunrise Rotary

Cindy Love and Katherine Caskey of the Greater Marco YMCA

Cindy Love and Katherine Caskey of the Greater Marco YMCA

Jan Butz helps out with her team from Capri Christian Church.

Jan Butz helps out with her team from Capri Christian Church.

2017 Meals of Hope organizers, from left: Erik Condee, Bill Morris and Steve Popper

2017 Meals of Hope organizers, from left: Erik Condee, Bill Morris and Steve Popper

The box-making assembly team celebrates completing their enormous task.

The box-making assembly team celebrates completing their enormous task.

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