Food For Thought Reaches Goal

The annual can drive collected more than 12 tons of food, surpassing the goal by two tons, for Redemptorist Social Services.


Ava Rawson

The stack of cans collected by the Sophomores that was located in the Commons.

Kamryn Rogers, Reporter

Students collected about 12.5 tons of non-perishable food items, exceeding the original goal of 10 tons during the annual Food For Thought drive for Redemptorist Social Services and earned a day off school Feb. 15.

“I am super excited and very proud of how everyone came together to make it happen,” STUCO sponsor Jennifer Brown-Howerton said.

There was also a competition between classes to see which grade could donate the most cans. Although there was no prize for the winning class, students still rallied to help their class totals. The freshman came in fourth place with 1,816 pounds of cans. In third were the sophomores with a total of 4,268 pounds of cans. In second place were the seniors with a total of 8,598 pounds. Coming in first place, the juniors raised a total of 10,211 pounds of cans. According to Junior Class Vice-President Munachi Okuagu, she was thrilled that the juniors could help lead the school in surpassing the goal.

“I’m really happy and grateful that the Junior Class brought in as much as we did,” Okuagu said. “It was definitely a collective effort.”

The canned food drive was originally supposed to last from Oct. 25 to Nov. 9, but was extended to Nov. 12 in the hopes of reaching the school-wide goal.

“I think extending the date allowed for more people to go out canning so we could get to our goal,” Okuagu said.

Despite this success, FFT started out a little rough according to Brown-Howerton. By the end of the first week of FFT, she said only a little over a ton had been collected, almost nine tons away from the goal. Going into the second week, members of STUCO held bake sales and coffee sales to help boost morale. STUCO also introduced a new way to give this year through the app, Venmo, which helped bring in the majority of the money for all the grades according to senior Gretta Allen who managed the senior’s Venmo account.

“It was an easy way to spread the word without actually asking people in person to donate money,” Allen said. “It’s an easy way for people to pay if they do not have cash on them.”

Food For Thought is an annual canned drive ran by Stuco. All the proceeds go to Redemptorist Social Services, a non-profit organization focused on helping Missourians find reliable food sources, according to their website.

“It’s so important for Redemptorist,” Brown-Howerton said. “They count on us to bring in the amount of food we’ve done in the past years.”

Moving forward, STUCO plans to keep this tradition going as well as be more prepared going into the annual canned food drive, according to Brown-Howerton.

“For next year, we really need to focus on thinking of incentives early rather than waiting on the last week,” Brown-Howerton said. “Also we need more communication. If anything, we need to over communicate.”