While most young people were seeking tricks or treats on October 31, almost 300 students from St. Joseph High School were Halloweening for Hunger, collecting food in support of the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre.
Rachelle Kelln, a teacher at St. Joseph who helped coordinate the effort said that work began at the beginning of October. Students needed no encouragement to sign up, and there was no shortage of students, with 285 participating. Then students went to work developing collection-route maps and distributing flyers to inform residents that they would be collecting food.
According to Laura O'Conner, the executive director the Saskatoon food bank, this collection helps give the Saskatoon Food Bank a tremendous boost for Christmas, a time when demand at the food bank spikes. She said that over the course of a month, the food bank gets over 20,000 visitors.
On November 2, three trucks from the food bank arrived at St. Joseph High School to pick up the food. But that wasn't enough to hold all the food. When all the food was delivered back to the food bank, a total of 19,655 pounds of food were collected. Kelsey O'Byrne, a teacher and fellow coordinator with Kelln, said it's humbling to see the work of the students, to see them "take off with the idea and do something like this."
Students from Holy Cross High School and Bishop James Mahoney High School also collected food. They collected 6,000 pounds and 4,500 pounds of food respectively, bringing the total weight of food collected by the three high schools to an impressive 30,155.
Story written with contributions from Sara Kunz from Holy Cross High School.