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50,000 cans to span three miles for hunger

Mark your calendars Drake. Celebrate Drake is in just a few weeks. You may be hearing buzz around campus regarding the 3-Mile Project. Yet, what is this?

This year, the National Residence Hall Honorary and the Residence Hall Association are organizing a service component aimed at raising 50,000 canned goods, which should be enough to span three miles from Drake to the new World Food Prize location, then to the Iowa Statehouse in honor of the 25th year anniversary of the fight against Iowa hunger and of the new World Food Prize location.

Starting this Wednesday, all students may be looking toward spreading their wealth with poverty in mind. Until Oct. 9, students have a brand new option for money donation via Sodexo. You may now swipe your Drake ID at any Hubbell location to donate $5 or $10 to global hunger and Iowa poverty. Sodexo also plans to match whichever organization reaches 500 cans first, which can then be used in the concluding competition. If you do not wish to hand over the extra flex dollars, there will be a southern style barbecue on Sept. 28 where your meal swipe counts towards cans.

“It all began last semester with an idea between me and my former roommate and former intern at the World Food Prize, (sophomore) Adam Riesselman, began writing down project ideas on our mirror in Morehouse,” RHA President and sophomore Eric Ferring said.

After numerous meetings with RHA, the Student Activities Board, Sodexo, Drake administration and numerous other groups both on campus and around the Des Moines community, the 3-Mile Project gained positive feedback and the support it needs to start off on the right foot.

Why not just stretch from Drake to the World Food Prize?

“We originally thought about that, but then we realized the topic of Iowa hunger had a much larger scope than just Drake,” Ferring said. “To tackle the objective of Iowa poverty, we would need to enlist the help of all citizens within the state of Iowa. Thus, we drew to line right to the heart of the Heartland.”

Some might say that RHA and NRHH are biting off a little more than they can chew, but nobody can really be punished for trying to take a big leap by setting a large goal. Maybe they won’t end up raising all 50,000 cans, but they will give it a shot and even if they only raise a few cans, then that would still be a few more cans than the Iowa Food Pantry had before the event.

When the 3-Mile Project ends on Oct. 8 with Celebrate Drake, SAB will host a competition among organizations entitled “Canstruction.” Every organization involved will get a separate spot in Parents Hall where they can compete by designing a canned good structure. Consideration will be given to smaller versus larger organizations to make judging fair.

If you are wondering about additional ways that your organization can get involved, there will also be a segment for penny wars in which each organization could get a cup to start raising money towards the cause. You could also ask members of the Des Moines community, your parents, family or other program service events for donations to do your part.

World Food Prize

According to the World Food Prize official website:

The World Food Prize recognizes “the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.”

World Food Prize Week will take place Oct. 10 – 16.

The Iowa Hunger Summit will celebrate its 5th anniversary this year and will take place on Oct. 11 at the Des Moines Marriot Downtown.

The Iowa Hunger Summit “celebrates Iowa’s great successes in fighting hunger and poverty and to unite in further action against both.”

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