The Ursinus Bonner Leaders as well as many local community members attended an event called Focus on Hunger, Oct. 20, hosted by Advocates Against Hunger at Eisenhower Science and Technology Leadership Academy. Junior Nicholas DiMuzio, a Bonner Leader, wrote this report:
At the event, there were various presentations, including a keynote explaining the depth of hunger and poverty that exists in our local community and throughout the world. There were also performances by a guitarist named Kipp Zimmerman, as well as spoken word poetry performances by Kai Davis and Jamarr Hill. Both poets are internationally award-winning poets.
Some striking statistics were included in a handout that was given to all attendees. Advocates Against Hunger claim that “Poverty is the Primary Factor Driving Hunger.” Some troubling statistics about the United States includes the following: “About a third of all workers in the US make $12 an hour or less,” “More than 40% of women who head families are now living in poverty,” and “70% of the children in the Norristown School District qualify for free or reduced price lunch.”
The Advocates Against Hunger Serving Norristown and Montgomery County have a common goal: “To promote community dialogue on hunger and nutrition in the Norristown area with the purpose of sustaining and improving delivery of food and nutrition to the poor, educating the community,increasing participation of volunteer population and increasing resources.”
Many Ursinus students contribute heavily to this goal of‘increasing participation of volunteer population.’ One of the many community partners that Ursinus has made a commitment to is Catholic Social Service (CSS) located in Norristown. CSS is a non-profit that provides a large variety of services to the community including, family support services, afterschool programs, shelter and transitional housing for the homeless, and more. Ursinus also contributes to the goals of Advocates Against Hunger by ‘sustaining and improving delivery of food and nutrition in the Norristown’ through Wismer on Wheels, as well as ‘educating the community’ through ACLAMO and CASA. Wismer on Wheels is a program based out of the Upper Wismer kitchen that packages the leftover food from Monday through Thursday and delivers the food to a local soup kitchen in Norristown. ACLAMO and CASA are both after-school programs located in Norristown that contribute the services of the Ursinus students to the youth of the community through homework help and educational and creative based development activities.
UCARE, the Ursinus Center for Advocacy Responsibility and Engagement, hopes to continue to engage Ursinus students to contribute to the needs of the local community. Further, the Bonner Leaders aspire to continue to bring awareness of events like Focus on Hunger to the Ursinus community.