On the night of October 31, over 800 volunteers took part in the 13th annual Halloween 4 Hunger campaign at St. Thomas More Catholic Secondary School, collecting over 75,000 pounds of non-perishable food items.
Halloween 4 Hunger has been a student-led campaign at STM since 2000 when it was introduced by the charity Free the Children. During the first campaign, volunteers visited 900 homes and collected a total of 2,000 cans of food instead of candy. This popular movement has continued to grow and, in 2011, 820 students, parents and teachers visited over 22,000 homes. They collected 66,263 pounds of non- perishable food items which were then donated to the Neighbour to Neighbour Food Bank on the Hamilton mountain. This massive donation stocked the food bank’s shelves for a month, servicing over 1,200 families in our community.
This year, the night of Halloween 4 Hunger was hectic. Volunteers met in St. Thomas More’s cafeteria at 4:30 p.m. with the official send-off beginning at 5 p.m. Volunteers hurried to their designated routes, some having to make several trips to and from the school to drop off food donations. Volunteers in the cafeteria then sorted, packed and stacked boxes of food into a small mountain in the corner of the room, ending at about 10 p.m. This “mountain” was kept in the cafeteria until the next morning when groups of students loaded the boxes into trucks provided by the Neighbour to Neighbour Food Bank.
This year, over 100 parent and teacher volunteers, 760 student volunteers, 15 executive members, 120 planning committee members and five teacher advisors worked together to collect over $6,000 and 75,648 pounds of non-perishable food items for Neighbour to Neighbour Food Bank. The generosity of so many in the community has managed to make this a record-breaking campaign. Thanks go out to all who donated, as well as to the students and staff who devoted their time to Halloween 4 Hunger.