12th Annual Empty Bowls Event

Empty Bowls

Marina Brazeal

Dig into the twelfth annual Empty Bowls fundraiser on March 10. Human Services Resource Center (HSRC) devotes their energy and funds towards helping students in need, and Empty Bowls is just one piece of the pie.

Empty Bowls is the primary fundraiser for the food pantry to help prevent student hunger and homelessness. While the HSRC was just granted a 70 percent budget increase, none of that money can go towards buying food for this cause.

“We have to use our foundation account for that,”  Nicole Hindes said, the Assistant Director of the HSRC. According to Hindes, it is a challenging task to keep track of how much money the HSRC has in their foundation account versus how much money we are spending and how much people are donating.

The HSRC pays a share cost to the Linn-Benton food share in order to obtain food for the Empty Bowls event. In order to pay these share costs, they need to have enough money in the foundations accounts to do so.

“Without Empty Bowls, we will not have as much money in that account,” Hindes said.

The HSRC gets a food order sheet where they can write down what they need. This includes canned vegetables or fruits, fresh fruits or vegetables, and frozen foods. This assortment of goods comes from farmers who sign with the HSRC and the Linn Benton food share. A cut from the Empty Bowls fundraiser goes back to the Linn Benton food share.

In Fall term, the HSRC was able to provide about 18 lbs of food per person at just a $2.28 share cost. If each household has an average of three people/three mouths to feed, that’s 54 lbs of food. The HSRC fundraises all through the year; in the previous Empty Bowls (in 2017), about $800 was raised for the HSRC food pantry, roughly the cost of one month’s worth of food share costs.

“If people just realized the impact that their donations had,” Hindes said, “They are so impactful and very needed.”