Sharing Our Harvest

Everywhere we look in this season, there are signs of harvest and crop gathering – pumpkins, chestnuts, mushrooms. The members of the UIS community decided to extend the abundance we are fortunate to have with others who are in need, and held a school-wide food drive. On Thursday the 9th of November, the student council representatives from Grades 3, 5 and 7, accompanied by Mrs.T, delivered the food to a local food kitchen, which is run by the CARITAS. There, the director showed us how the  “mensa” operates to provide food for people who come from all around the world to Italy. She explained that although there are a few paid workers at the “mensa”, nothing would be possible without the precious work of the volunteers, who find time in their ordinary jobs and lives to help people who are experiencing a time of difficulty, even throughout the holidays. Meals are planned according to whatever foods arrive at the center at that time, so menus can’t really be planned that much in advance. The structure also offers some Italian language lessons and some psychiatric help for people going through a rough time. The aim of the “mensa” is to help the people for a year or less before they become self-sufficient. During the winter, they also provide some bedding for the homeless. During the visit, the director stressed that it is very important for the center that no food be wasted, leading us to reflect on how we treat food on a daily basis in our lunchroom. This was a very valuable and eye-opening experience and we hope to continue working with the “mensa” in the future.   Student Council Representatives & Mrs. T.