The RTP Rotary Club packed 10,000 meals in partnership with Stop Hunger Now, an international hunger-relief organization. The nonprofit coordinates the distribution of food and other aid to crisis areas across the globe.
David Harlow, an attorney and vice president of the RTP Rotary Club, said volunteers filled bags with raw ingredients including a combination of proteins from soybean, rice for a starch, dried vegetables and a vitamin pack that can be stored for months. These meals are shipped overseas to more than a dozen countries for malnourished children. The food is often distributed through schools and orphanages.
More than 60 people including 48 volunteers from various RTP companies including Syngenta Biotechnology, Inc., RTI International, and the NC Biotechnology Center participated in the food assembly line. At times, the attendees got down with synchronized dance moves as they bundled meals.
“You get a lot of reward for a small amount of effort,” Harlow said of the 90-minute packing event. “Stop Hunger Now has an excellent set up. Everyone works together in a small team.”
“We paid for the supplies for the meals and brought the man power,” says Club President Andrew Kerr. The Frontier in RTP donated the space. The RTP Rotary contributed $2,944 from its charitable giving fund to pay for the raw ingredients. Each meal cost .29 cents.
The club members range from a 19-year-old N.C. State sophomore to working men and women in their late 60s, explains David Spisak, secretary and president elect of the RTP Rotary Club.
“We all came together,” he said. Scientists, marketing specialists and business men and women worked side by side at stations, scooping food into bins and bags to help those with less means across the globe.
This particular chapter of the Rotary Club is uniquely positioned in RTP, a community made up of 200 companies and more than 46,000 employees.
“We have an educated, bright, hardworking committed population that wants to come together to do good,” says Spisak. In previous Rotary chapters he’s served in, that meant assisting elderly neighbors with raking leaves or delivering dictionaries to elementary students.
But this chapter is empowered to be a focal point of service opportunities in RTP. “It’s not a community with issues and problems,” he explains. So the club’s focus is: community building, engaging new generations and supporting education.”
“I get goosebumps thinking about what we did,” he says. “Through the event we reinforced the concept of community within the RTP by bringing other like-minded neighbors together for important community service.”
Wanna get involved?
The RTP Rotary is hosting a wine raffle fundraiser this week at The Frontier! You can find more information about RTP and SW Durham Rotary Clubs and the Rotary Wine Raffle Fundraiser by clicking here.
Tickets are $10.
The prizes are:
Grand Prize – A Bottle of Wine a Week for a Year.
1st Place Winners – A Bottle of Wine a Week for Half a Year.
2nd Place Winners – A Bottle of Wine a Month for a Year.
3rd Place Winners – A Bottle of Wine a Month for Half a Year
If you’d like to help RTP and SW Durham Rotary Clubs boost their charitable giving funds, you may purchase tickets to the Rotary Wine Raffle Fundraiser here.