The Fort Collins Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Feeding Children Everywhere partnered together to package 49,600 meals for hungry children on Saturday.
The meal kits were assembled by 320 volunteers, including Colorado State University students, in 75 minutes. A total of 5,000 of the kits will be donated to the Larimer County McBackpack organization, which provides food to students and their families who do not have enough food for the weekends, according to their website.
The remaining 44,600 meals will be donated to the Global Refugee Center of Greeley, which gives refugees the tools they need to succeed in their community. The meal kits contain dried lentils, white rice, dehydrated vegetables and pink Himalayan salt.
Volunteers included refugees and members from the CSU Muslim Student Association as well as other CSU students and community members.
Feeding Children Everywhere is a non-profit organization that helps local charities curb hunger, according to the event’s press release.
The event was a celebration of the Relief Society’s anniversary. March 17 marked 175 years since the women’s Relief Society began.
“This event is our gift of love and service to unite cultures while celebrating the Relief Society’s 175th anniversary,” said Joyce Pratt, the Fort Collins Relief Society’s president.
The Relief Society is a women’s organization and an auxiliary of the Mormon Church and is one of the oldest and largest women’s organizations in the world, according to their website.
Their website states the purpose of the Relief Society is to “strengthen individuals, families, and homes…and work in unity to help those in need.”
The Fort Collins stake of the church includes nine congregations that serve members in Fort Collins, Bellvue, LaPorte, Masonville, Red Feather Lakes, Timnath and Wellington. The stake also includes congregations dedicated to serving young adults as well as Spanish speakers, according to their website.
The Fort Collins Stake Relief Society Blood Drive was also held at the same time and 56 units of blood were donated to UC Health of Fort Collins in conjunction with the event.
“The Hunger Project is a way to connect face to face with those who have been displaced and are in need,” said Dylan Thompson, the Relief Society Event Organizer, in a press release.
Guests at the event included the CSU Director of Women’s Studies, Dr. Caridad Souza, as well as her husband, Godwin Abotsi, a Ghanaian native.
“In honor of celebrating Relief Society’s 175th anniversary this March, we honor others by giving relief and hope to the Global Refugee Center,” Thompson said.
Collegian reporter Jenn Yingling can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @jenn_yingling.