Lakeland Christian Academy students are doing more than just hitting the books, playing sports or spending time with friends. Students at LCA are preparing for the sixth annual Combined Community Services Food Drive next week.
The food drive, which is almost entirely organized by LCA students, will begin collecting non-perishable food items throughout the Winona Lake and Warsaw communities on Monday, Sept. 30. When asked what the most challenging part of preparing for the food drive was, student organizers Cameron Estep, Julianne Haines, Abbey Hartwiger, Victoria Flores, Landyn Brune and Sarah Gross agreed preparing the paper bags was most challenging, and for good reason. The group has worked diligently for weeks during lunch hours, study halls and student free-time stapling and organizing a total of 4,000 paper bags to be distributed at homes throughout the area.
On Wednesday, Oct. 2, students, will return to homes that received donation sacks and fliers to collect any non-perishable food items donated. Residents are permitted to place food items in boxes or bags and leave them at the end of their driveway or in a visible location for pick up. Should a home be missed, donors are encouraged to call 574-267-7265 to have someone come and pick up the donation. As an added service, donors are able to place their CCS Coat Drive donations with their food items to be delivered to CCS.
According to Carmen Flores, guidance counselor at LCA, last year’s donations totaled a total of 11,000 pounds of non-perishable goods. LCA students will meet on Wednesday at that the CCS lawn to sort the goods, stock them in the client-choice food pantry and carry excess donations to the CCS storage area.
Suggested donations include items such as peanut butter, jelly, macaroni and cheese, canned tuna or chicken in water, oatmeal, cereal, spaghetti sauce, noodles, Ramen noodles, baking mixes, healthy foods and gluten free products.
Flores noted many students involved in the program have been participating since the creation of the food drive 6 years ago. In addition, she said the drive offered students insight into many practical skills such as organizing, using a photo copier and making professional phone calls related to the drive.
Though the students gained useful tools for the future, many noted that they were walking away with more than just those advancements. When asked what skills or lessons students have gained from their efforts with the food drive, senior Victoria Flores stated, “I’ve seen an impact on our community and a need for this program. The food drive has inspired me to be more generous and to take our lessons about God into the community.”
For questions or additional information about the food drive, call Lakeland Christian Academy at 574-267-7265.