With nearly $8,000 in cash and and over 2,000 food items in hand, Howland local school students and Shortreed and Associates, a financial advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial located in Cortland, helped to fight hunger in the Mahoning Valley last month.
''This is a perfect example of a collaboration of schools and community,'' said Gussie Reed, chairperson of the Trumbull Mobile Meals Board of Directors.
Students representing the Howland Interact Club, Howland Girls Basketball team, teachers and classified workers, as well as the entire school system, were at the offices of Trumbull Mobile Meals on High Street in Warren on Nov. 18 to deliver their donations after taking part in the Second Annual Ameriprise Financial's National Day of Service.
Students in the Howland Interact Club, an affiliate of the Howland Rotary Club, donated $1,500 to Trumbull Mobile Meals last month as as part of their National Day of Service project. Students have been participating in the project for the past two years and have held fundraisers and a food drive in all Howland schools. In addition to TMM, donations also were given to the Howland Community Church food bank. Pictured, from left, are: Kathy Keeler with Trumbull Mobile Meals; Carolyn Andrews with the Howland Rotary Club; Heather Johnson, 17; Rachel Hardin, 17; and Emily Kotyuk, 17.
According to Ameriprise, the purpose behind National Day of Service is to help provide food needs to the people of the community and to engage members of their organizations to volunteer in helping to fight hunger in the Mahoning Valley.
Trumbull Mobile Meals serves more than 500 meals each day to homebound residents of Trumbull County. Volunteer drivers with specific routes spend up to an hour any weekday they are available to deliver meals, Reed said.
When there are no drivers available, office staff will leave their posts to deliver meals, she said. The organization is always in need of volunteers to help.
This year's National Day of Service efforts resulted in a donation of over $8,000 to Trumbull Mobile Meals, 300 shelf ready meals, and more than 2,000 items to the local food bank.
Howland High School Interact Club, an affiliate of the Howland Rotary Club, presented a donation of $3,623, which included $1,500 from the Howland Interact Club, $662 Howland Girls' Basketball Team, $1,295 from the Howland Classroom Teachers' Association and $166 from OAPSE Howland Local Union.
Trumbull Mobile Meals also uses non-perishable food and paper product needs used to create shelf-ready meals for snow days and weekends.
In the Howland Schools, the Interact Club organized a food drive involving the high school, Glen Elementary, Howland Springs Elementary, Howland Rotary and OAPSE. In addition to the donations that enabled TMM to provide 300 shelf ready meals to to clients, donations also provided more than 2,000 items to the Howland Community Church food bank.
The program, sponsored by Shortreed & Associates, their clients and the Howland Interact Club has donated more than $20,000 in money and food products, as well as services to those in need, for the past two years.
''It can't happen with just one person,'' Reed said.
For information on making a donation or volunteering with Trumbull Mobile Meals, call 330-394-2538 or visit www.trumbullmobilemeals.org.