Nearly one in five children in America lives in households that struggle to put food on the table and a group of Greenwich teens did their part to help end childhood hunger, raising $1,000 for the cause.
At the start of the year, local Greenwich middle and high school students embarked on a philanthropy project at JCC Greenwich to help raise money to end childhood hunger. Through a partnership with Areyvut, a non-profit organization based in New Jersey, a group of teens met every month as part of the JCC’s Teen Action Committee and learned about community needs, philanthropy, valuable leadership skills and local agencies.
To raise funds for this important cause, they built their own fundraising websites, designed and sold custom T-shirts, and held a phone-a-thon, from which they raised $1,000 in donations. Through their independent research of organizations that support this cause, they decided to donate these funds to the Kosher Food Pantry of Jewish Family Service (JFS) in Stamford and Leket Israel, Israel’s largest food rescue organization.
“By participating in the Teen Action Committee, I learned that teens of any age can work together to take initiative and enact change,” Becca Powell, a rising senior at Greenwich High School, said in a statement.
Rebekah Kanefsky from the JFS Kosher Food Pantry said the funds would be used to purchase a much-needed new freezer and allow them to continue their vital work of serving approximately 2,000 meals per month to members of the community throughout Lower Fairfield County who are unable to provide food for their families due to financial difficulties.
Learning about food needs around the world helped change the perspective of 14-year-old Reese Ochoa. “As a result of the project, I feel very lucky for where I live and to have food on the table,” Reese said. Sixteen-year-old Natalie Lilien said the project made her realize “I want to improve the lives of people in my community…and become more involved with soup kitchens.”
Leah Schechter, Assistant Director of JCC Greenwich, said, “We are so proud of what the Teen Action Committee has achieved this year in doing their part to help create a world where no child goes to bed hungry. The process has been an important learning experience for this group of teens in philanthropy and fundraising for Tzedakah.”
Contributed photo: JCC Greenwich Teen Action Committee members holding a check that will be used to purchase a new freezer for the Kosher Food Pantry of Jewish Family Service in Stamford.
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