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A Volunteer's Own Fundraiser for Feeding Hands

The Hunger Games

The sun beats down on the dried lawn and darts fly back and forth across the field. I watch a few fly over into the neighbor’s yard…whoops. Kids dodge and weave across the grass; some spray volleys of darts through the air with motorized guns, while others race past enemy players firing a few shots from a pistol hoping to land a lucky hit.

“Go back to respawn already! I already hit you three times!”

“I shot you long before you ever hit me!”

“That one bounced off my gun, it doesn’t count.”

“Back to respawn both of you,” I interject impatiently.

Eventually I blew the whistle.

“Blue team wins!” I holler hoarsely. “Reset all your gear, and we can go another round!”

King of the Hill with shields

In April of 2020, my mom took my sister and me to serve at Feedings Hands to help support the community at the onset of the pandemic. While I enjoyed my time hauling groceries onto flatbeds before loading them into worn minivans, I was eager to find my own unique way to contribute. I decided to take my love of Nerf guns and run fundraiser battles in my backyard. Once pandemic gathering restrictions eased, I put together an advert for my first event entitled: Hope for the Hungry Nerf Battle Event. Raising $200 from 10 participants, I was emboldened to hold another event. My sister later recommended the moniker “The Hunger Games,” which became the official title for future battles.

First Event (2021)

Hurricane Ida led to severe flooding causing Feedings Hands to lose all their food supply and equipment at two of their facilities. To help with recuperation, a donor offered to match any donations made to Feedings Hands, which made it the prime opportunity to run another battle in November. To adjust for the colder weather, we served pizza instead of Italian ices and ice cream bars. The November Hunger Games (or Turkey Shootout as I called it) was the most successful event yet, raising $360 and combined with the matching, totalled $720.

For one event, I invited Mr. Gary Isler, a Feeding Hands board member to give a short presentation about the organization. The participants got to learn more about Feeding Hands through the stories of people deeply blessed by the food pantry. Thanks so much for coming, Mr. Isler!

November Turkey Shoot Out Mr. Isler's Presentation Reading the Rules

Running Hunger Games battles has proved to be a satisfying and meaningful way for me to serve, and I hope to continue to hold as many events as possible through this summer and the next. With inflation soaring, record numbers of families are utilizing the service of Feeding Hands each week. Hunger Games will continue to be an outlet for frenzied fun, as well as a conduit for raising awareness of community needs and how we can help.

Presenting a check to Mrs. Bennett

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