Beans and Rice, Inc. — a non-profit organization based in Pulaski and Radford which serves low-to-moderate income families — will host its annual fundraiser, Empty Bowls. This year’s event, presented by First Bank of Virginia, is focused specifically on the issue of Childhood hunger. It will take place on Friday, April 11th at the New River Valley Fraternal Order of Police Lodge in Radford. An open house for bowl browsing and silent auction bidding begins at 5pm. Dinner – sponsored by Jo Alderman of Giesen-Caldwell, CGJC Enterprises, Bob & Debbie Piscura, and Greg & Fran Rooker - will be served at 6 pm. Tickets are available at www.beansandrice.org or at the door for $20 and entitle guests to one free handcrafted bowl.
This is the 15th consecutive year Beans and Rice, Inc. has conducted the fundraiser in efforts to combat hunger in and around the City of Radford. Last year’s event raised $4,700. The majority of bowls are ceramic and crafted by Radford University Art Professor Drew Dodson and his students. This year’s event features the addition of a limited number of handmade glass and wooden bowls.
Empty Bowls is an international grassroots effort to fight hunger. The basic premise is simple: Potters and other craftspeople donate materials and time to create handcrafted bowls. Guests are invited to share a simple meal and learn about hunger issues. In exchange for a cash donation, guests are asked to keep a bowl as a reminder that there are always empty bowls in the world.
According to Share Our Strength’s national Non Kid Hungry campaign, childhood hunger is an epidemic affecting 16 million US children, or 1 in 5 kids. Currently, 22% of US children under 18 live in poverty. In Radford both elementary schools have free/reduced priced lunch rates above 40%, up from 23% in 2002. Recent research from the Harvard School Breakfast Research Summary demonstrates that “lack of enough healthy food can impair a child’s ability to concentrate and perform well in school.”
All event proceeds support local children enrolled in Beans and Rice, Inc. afterschool programs at Bell Heth and McHarg Elementary schools. Backpacks are sent home each weekend from mid-September through the end of May to approximately 120 City of Radford Public School students. Backpacks are filled with self-stable food and fresh fruit adequate for 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, and 2 snacks per weekend. Proceeds also benefit Beans and Rice’s a weekly food distribution of perishable grocery items donated by Wal-Mart. The program occurs weekly throughout the year at two low-income housing complexes.
Local citizens and businesses can help combat food insecurity by:
- Attending the event and bringing friends and family.
- Donating merchandise or services (gift certificates) for the silent auction,
- Making a contribution of $25 or more to the Empty Bowls project.
Visit http://blog.beansandrice.org to learn more and see a complete list of silent auction items including handmade wooden bowls and select furniture as well as services and merchandise from local merchants.
WHO: Working-age adults, children, retired seniors, college students, community volunteers, elected public officials, AmeriCorps members, Beans and Rice staff, local civic organizations
WHAT: 2014 Beans and Rice Empty Bowls Dinner and Silent Auction
WHEN: Friday, April 11, 2013, 5 pm Open House, 6 pm Dinner
WHERE: Fraternal Order of Police Lodge (University Boulevard near Radford University Dedmon Center), Radford, VA.