DAVENPORT, IOWA (November 14, 2019) — Students from 17 area high schools joined at River Bend Foodbank to celebrate their accomplishments over the past 6 weeks. This year, students provided 568,317 meals to help feed the hungry in eastern Iowa and western Illinois.
Through the Drive, students rally around a significant community need — hunger — as they plan and execute their own food drives over a six-week period. The emphasis is on nutritional food and the students set their goals and work hard to exceed them, while enjoying a friendly competition with other area high schools. Students also learn about volunteerism through this hands-on experience.
“Students have a passion for making a difference in their community! They are becoming conscientious, fierce advocates in helping to end hunger and are very passionate about the cause,” said Rachel Grewe, River Bend Foodbank Programs Coordinator. “Students are learning and developing organizational and leadership skills, while collecting foods and funds to help serve our mission of ending hunger in eastern Iowa and western Illinois. Each school’s approach is unique. Schools organize internal school events such as collecting at sporting events, classroom completions, filling a principal’s office with donations, and holding special Student Hunger Drive assemblies to rally the students and educate on the issue of food insecurity in the community. They’ve also rallied to get the community involved by treat-or-treating for cans — in the snow this year — collecting donations at grocery stores, and hosting community events like trivia nights, restaurant fundraisers, and soup dinners.”
According to Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap Study (2019), one out of every nine individuals (and one out of every six children) struggles with food insecurity locally. They lack access to enough food to live a healthy, active lifestyle. Hunger continues to be a prevalent issue and needs a community-wide effort in order to solve the issue.
“I am inspired by the youth of our community,” said Mike Miller, President and CEO of River Bend Foodbank. “Once again, they have collected a significant amount of food. I am impressed with their spirit. I am impressed with the depth with which they came to understand that hunger is a completely solvable problem in our community. Most importantly, I am impressed by the quality of the nutritious food they collected for hungry people. This is a unique legacy of our community, an entire generation of citizens who want to help hungry people because of their experience in high school.”
2019 Student Hunger Drive award winners:
• Division A (enrollment 1251+)
- 1st Place: Pleasant Valley High School
- 2nd Place: Bettendorf High School
- Most Improved: Rock Island High School
• Division B (enrollment 300-1250)
- 1st Place: Alleman High School
- 2nd Place: Assumption High School
- Most Improved: Orion High School
• Division C (enrollment 25-299)
- 1st Place: Morning Star Academy
- 2nd Place: Quad Cities Christian School
- Most Improved: Morning Star Academy
• Mission Challenge Winner
- Moline High School
2019 Student Hunger Drive sponsors:
Arconic, Bechtel Trust, Hubbell-Waterman Foundation, Hy-Vee, Lujack Hiline of the Quad Cities, and The Moline Foundation.
2019 Student Hunger Drive participating schools:
Alleman High School, Assumption High School, Bettendorf High School, Davenport Central High School, Mercer County High School, Moline High School, Morning Star Academy, Davenport North High School, North Scott High School, Orion High School, Pleasant Valley High School, Quad Cities Christian School, Rivermont Collegiate, Rock Island High School, Sherrard High School, United Township High School, and Davenport West High School.
About River Bend Foodbank — The Foodbank is the largest hunger relief organization in the Quad Cities and surrounding communities, having distributed over 17 million meals in FY2018/19 to hungry people in eastern Iowa and western Illinois. Our mission is leading the community-wide effort to end hunger in Iowa and Illinois. We do this through food distribution in partnership with our network of hunger-relief agency partners and programs. The best and easiest way to help is to go online: visit us at riverbendfoodbank.org.