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In hopes of defeating famine in developing countries, a non-profit organization in Springfield is holding several food packaging events. KSMU’s Matthew Barnes reports.
Reporter Standup: “I’m standing now at the Friends Against Hunger warehouse where the non-profit organization packs and ships all of their goods to underprivileged countries. There are several boxes lying about. Some are filled with clothes and others filled with food like peanut butter. And it looks like they have all the thing they need to send to help these countries, except for volunteers to help pack the goods.”
“We are a completely volunteer based organization. We have no paid employees,” says Wood.
That’s Karen Wood, director of Friends Against Hunger.
“We package a special meal. It’s been formulated for people that have been severely malnourished and for people that have poor nutrition. And it’s used both in the United States and around the world”, say Wood.
The meal of soy, rice and dehydrated vegetables provides a balanced diet and helps with brain development. The organization has been sending food overseas and to local shelters for a number of years. Right now, the goal is to package and send out 400,000 packaged meals over the next few weeks. While some will go to local homeless shelters, others will eventually end up nourishing the bodies of refugees fleeing the famine in Somalia.
“Volunteers come here and actually pour the ingredients into the bag. And then we have another step where they weight the bags. Then they seal the bags and then we box them and get them ready for shipment. So it’s an easy process, it’s just 2 hours of work, Most of our jobs require standing,” says Wood.
The food packaging events will be held the second weekend of every month. They begin on September 10thand will continue until the goal is met. For anyone wishing to help volunteer, they may find more information at KSMU.org. For KSMU News, I’m Matthew Barnes.