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Serve: Be One of Our Helping Hands

By May 16, 2014 February 18th, 2018 No Comments

Be One of Our Helping Hands

Helping Hands, a program developed by Catholic Relief Services and Stop Hunger Now, is a high-energy, hands-on way for Catholics in the U.S. to tackle hunger around the world. During an event, volunteers package nutritious meals for people in Burkina Faso suffering from food shortages and famine. CRS educates volunteers about the people and country they are helping, ships the meals and provides skills training and other long-term programs that help break the cycle of hunger.

We are organizing a local food-packaging event, and we need your help. In order to host this event, we need 80 people to help work on the assembly line to package the food. The parish is helping along, with my school to help raise the money.

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This is a fun, educational, and simple project that has a major impact. We will be packaging 10,000 meals, and each meal serves 6 people. That is 60,000 people being fed in developing countries. We need volunteers on the day of the event to come and help package the food. The 7th and 8th grade class will be going to Blessed Pope John XXIII parish to help package the food. But in order to accomplish this goal, I need your help. The event will take place at St. John XXIII on May 20. We plan on starting at 9:00 am.

If you have any questions concerning the event you can contact me at: isabella.m.rodriguez@hotmail.com

The Interview with Isabella

DH: Tell me about this effort you’re making.
IR: It’s a new packaging program where you package rice, soy, vegetable and nutrition packets. You package them, and then send them to developing countries.

DH: And how did this get started… why do you feel the need to help other people?
IR: Each year my school has a speech contest and this year the topic was “How my passions can change the world” and I chose my passion to be perseverance. Earlier in the year, my family went to a meal packaging service in a local high school and that experience stuck with me. So I’m trying to use my perseverance in this case to persevere as an act of love, to help people who are not as fortunate.

DH: Tell me about some of the other things in your life in which you persevere… school, sports, what else?
IR: In school, I like academics although it gets harder every year. In sports, I play soccer and that takes a lot of perseverance to practice, play games and just get out there every day.

DH: Awesome. So tell me about what kind of a student you are. What do you excel in? What do you like about school? And tell me where you go to school.
IR: I go to Royal Palm Academy in Naples. I like math. Math is my favorite subject. I’m not a good speller so you don’t really have to spell a lot in math.

DH: You obviously have a heart for service, tell me about your vision for the future.
IR: I’d like to grow up and be a doctor, a radiologist preferably, and go out there and do the Doctors Without Borders program. I think that would have a huge impact not only on me but the people around me.

DH: That’s pretty specific. Don’t they need big equipment to do radiology?
IR: Or just generally going out there and helping with simple things like medications, vaccinations and simple regular check-ups.

DH: Sounds like you want to travel.
IR: Yes.

DH: What is it about travel, and where do you want to go? You said they are sending the food packets to Africa or maybe some parts of India?
IR: Or places where it is determined that it is most needed at this time.

DH: Do you have any experience with third world countries?
IR: My family is from Brazil and I figure that’s considered a third world country. You do see some poverty there but nothing like Africa or the Middle East.

DH: So a lot of people will tell you, Isabella, there are people in America who are suffering and they need your help here. They’ll say Why don’t you fix the problems at home first? And then you are going to have the opposing argument saying, “American’s can fend for themselves.”. “We have all the resources we need.” Which side of the argument are you on? IR: I agree that America does need help. There are other programs available like Food For the Poor. But Catholic Relief Services mainly focuses on international aid.

DH: Pretty good answer. That was a trick question. You didn’t fall for the trick. OK. So what else do you do with your life? What position do you play in soccer?
IR: I play center forward.

DH: Do you score a lot of goals?
IR: I think I do. Yes. I don’t know how I compare to other people but I think I’m a good player. We play other Catholic schools like St. Ann’s and St. Elizabeth Seton. Naples Christian Academy is probably our biggest rivel. There are only about 200-250 kids at my school, so we’re a small team.

DH: Where will you go to high school?
IR: Bishop Verot here in Fort Myers.

DH: Are you looking forward to high school?
IR: I’m excited. It will be a big change. I’m looking forward to it. Going from 200 to 800 kids is quite a difference but I think it will be fun.

DH: You’re almost done with school. You’ve got two months and you’ll be ready for high school. We look forward to having you around, and good luck with your food drive. SEE BELOW.
IR: Thank you.

 

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