In two and a half hours on Jan. 28, 46 volunteers, mostly Rotarians from the Rotary Club of Herndon-Reston and its Interact club members from South Lakes and Herndon high schools, packed 10,152 meals for global distribution by Rise Against Hunger. Rise mission is "Driven by the vision of a world without hunger, Rise Against Hunger is growing a global movement to end hunger by empowering communities, nourishing lives and responding to emergencies."
Pam Love is the community engagement coordinator for Rise. She led the Jan. 28 meal packing event at Fairfax County Public Schools Aldrin Elementary in Reston. Love said soy protein granules in the meal bags protect muscles and satisfy hunger. Rice provides carbohydrate fuel, while dried vegetables boost nutrient intake. After cooking, recipients add a vitamin and mineral packet.
"Rotary is one of our largest sponsors and partnerships within the organization on a national scale," Love said. She expressed her appreciation for Rotary's generosity and the volunteers' work.
Analiese Jones, 15, Patrecia Anjum, 17, Izzy Ahad, 16, and Emily Pham, from the Herndon High School Interact Club, were among the volunteers. Izzy said, "I heard about it and thought it would be interesting. Plus, there are service hours."
Elysa Birman, who is in charge of community service for the Rotary Club of Herndon-Reston, says that the club paid for the 10,152 meals. Donations helped cover some of the cost.
Rise reported that in 2021 it accomplished serving over 2.7 million people in 29 countries with its programs and facilitated the packaging of more than 540 million meals to date to be distributed to countries worldwide.