SWFL students hold their own walk to help raise money for the WINK Hunger Walk

Reporter: Nicole Lauren
Published: Updated:
Orange River students hold their own hunger walk (WINK News)

You can make a huge difference for your neighbors in need as we quickly approach the kick-off of the WINK Feeds Families Hunger Walk—a program benefiting the Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Harry Chapin says, although the economy is doing well right now and unemployment is low, people still need our help in Southwest Florida.

“The things that make people find themselves in need of food and support haven’t changed. People still get sick, people still go through difficult crises of one kind or another and that’s when they need help,” said Richard Leber, president and CEO of Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Hundreds of students kicked off their own version of the WINK Feeds Families Hunger Walk in an effort to help the community Friday.

Four laps, hundreds of kids—all with one goal in mind: to make sure no family, or child, go hungry.

“The kids did it out of goodwill just wanting to help others,” said teacher Craig Kearney.

Kearney, along with staff and students, put on a Hunger Walk to help WINK News and the Harry Chapin Food Bank reach our goal of raising $300,000.

“And it was a really short turnaround,” said Carol Neubert from Orange River Elementary. “In a week we raised over $1,800.”

Fifth-grader Jamelee Sicajan says that money will go a long way. “We’re going to use that money to help children who don’t have food.”

The Harry Chapin Food Bank says for every dollar raised, that turns into $8 worth of food. Fourth-grader Pedro Antonio said he feels his classmates are making a difference.

All of this is made possible through generous free donations of food. Last year alone, 22 million pounds of food was distributed by Harry Chapin, and the biggest percentage of their recipients are children.

“They’ve been helping us raise enough money to help other people who need food. I feel it’s great because they are helping other people,” he said and also their community.

“There are so many of our students in our surrounding communities who had to use the Harry Chapin Food Bank, so it’s just something we want to do to give back,” Kearney said.

One step at a time.

“Every little bit helps,” Sicajan said.

You can register for the Hunger Walk at the Miromar Outlets on Saturday at 8:30 a.m. and the walk begins at 9:30 a.m.

For more information or to donate, click here.

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