Community Comes Together to Fill Empty Bowls

Community Comes Together to Fill Empty Bowls photo

The Northport High School art club hosted an “Empty Bowls” fundraiser to benefit the Ecumenical Lay Council Food Pantry on March 20. “Empty Bowls” is an international grass roots effort to raise funds for local food charities and educate people around issues of poverty and hunger in their community.

Each year, art club facilitator and event organizer Linda Johansen applies for a grant from the Altice Connects Charity Champions. Once selected for the grant, the organization gives the art club $250 to get started on the project. In addition, the organization donates $1,000 to the charity of the club’s choice, which is the Ecumenical Lay Council Food Pantry—a local food pantry that provides food for over 150 families in the community.

In order to bring awareness to all the those in the world who are hungry, art club members, student volunteers, and members of the community created handmade ceramic bowls in preparation for their annual soup dinner. Over 70 volunteers made this years’ Empty Bowls fundraiser possible. Those who attended to support the cause donated $10 dollars for soup, and were able to keep one of the 400 the beautifully crafted ceramic bowls as a reminder of all the empty bowls in the world.

“For a lot of my students, putting on this event is an eye opener,” said Ms. Johansen, “understanding that it could be a neighbor, a teacher, or a friend that needs help.”

In addition to the $1,000 donation by Charity Champions, the fundraiser itself raised approximately $5,000. This food pantry has been the annual fundraiser’s charity of choice for the past six years, and the art club has raised over $35,000 for them since.

“This event shows everyone involved the joy you feel when you are doing something to help others,” said Ms. Johansen. “I believe that my students will carry that with them for the rest of their lives.”