The Texas State University Interfraternity Council (IFC) banded together to make a difference in their community this holiday season.
Out of all the non-profits in town, they decided to raise awareness about food insecurity by sponsoring Hays County Food Bank. The IFC set a lofty goal of collecting 5,000 pounds of food (approximately 5,000 cans) between October and November of 2016.
When asked about why they set their goal so high, IFC representative Jesse Denier said, “[in 2014] we raised 900 pounds, last year we made 4,200, and this year we decided we would destroy 4,200 and get it well known on campus that this is something we do.”. They were so dedicated that they exceeded their 5,000 goal by 53 pounds.
The reason that IFC members were so successful is because they came up with creative ways to make donating more fun.
They held 2 events where they collected canned items – a Greek Olympics and a CANStruction event, where fraternities challenged each other to bring enough cans to build fun images at the LBJ Mall. 14 out of the 16 IFC chapters participated.
The council hopes to grow their participation even more next year. Garth Tubbs, IFC President, said that “every year it’s just going to get bigger and bigger, so that’s kind of what we’re aiming for.” At the end of the CANstruction event, participating groups were judged on creativity, bobcat spirit and more.
In addition to providing food for hungry Hays County residents, the CANstruction event opened a dialogue about hunger on the college campus.
Some students at Texas State University are unaware that 1 in 7 Hays County residents are food insecure. “There are people in Hays County who really need this, more than just like you’re having a tough week because you went to the square too many times,” said Denier.
Students passing by the LBJ Mall during the event were reminded of this reality. If you would like to host a food drive or fundraiser for Hays County Food Bank, please contact Ashley Hurst (Development Director), at AHurst@HaysFoodBank.org or at (512) 392-8300 x230.
In 2015, Hays County Food Bank and its 20+ partner agencies distributed 690,397 pounds of food to an average of nearly 12,000 food insecure residents each month. These residents were senior citizens, children, and many others facing economic challenges. “Food insecurity” refers to the availability of food and one’s access to it. Hays County Food Bank is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit haysfoodbank.org or visit us on Facebook or Twitter at @HaysFoodBank.