Aveson Charter students set out to end hunger, one box at a time
By Sara Cardine 01/30/2013
This week, first- and second-graders from the Aveson School of Leaders in Altadena are convening in Pasadena at the Friends in Deed house to make a very special delivery. For two days, beginning yesterday, more than 100 students from the charter school are bringing boxes of food donations to be distributed by the nonprofit’s food pantry. The pantry hands out supplemental food items to about 200 low-income and homeless households in the community each week.
The journey that culminated with the donations began with a simple question posed to the students: “Why do people go hungry when there is so much food in the world?”
The discussion provoked by that question led to the formation of an in-class project designed to acquaint the youngsters with the wider issues of global hunger and food distribution, according to Aveson teacher Tom Hyatt.
“Their teachers, committed to global learning, helped them explore the global issue of hunger and helped them find a way to take action in their own community,” Hyatt wrote in an email.
The students interviewed the pantry’s manager, Tim Nistler, and later toured a local supermarket, where they learned more about how food is received and prepared for purchase.
“After the supermarket manager gave them a guided tour, they were ready to act,” Hyatt said. “Armed with knowledge and about $15 per small group, students chose items from the shelves to donate to local families in need.”
About $350 worth of donated food items were collected by Aveson students. According to Hyatt, one female student said after selecting the items, “I feel like I changed the world.”
“She may well have begun to do just that,” the teacher concluded.
A project of the Ecumenical Council of Pasadena Area Congregations (ECPAC), Friends in Deed, at the corner of Los Robles Avenue and Washington Boulevard, offers food distribution as well as support programs and a bad weather shelter for the area’s homeless. To contact the pantry or make a donation, call (626) 797-6072 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.