Competition for Charity

Emma Beierlein, Editor

As many may be familiar, Rock Island takes on a tough competition over the course of a few weeks for the Student Hunger Drive. High schools all around the QC Area compete to achieve the highest weight of food. Even though it is for a good cause, the competition sparks rivalries around the area. 

Student Council President, Kailyn Sanders, opens up about what the Hunger Drive means to her. Hunger Drive requires many countless hours in the community, school and the foodbank, but it means a lot to Sanders to volunteer her hours. She states, “ Volunteering benefits me mentally. I have always loved helping people in any way, and volunteering helps me achieve that. It makes me feel like I’m doing the right thing without being forced to do it.”

Hunger Drive requires a lot of effort from Student Council to plan events leading up to Loading Day. Loading Day is the final date, where participating schools deliver their food to the River Bend Food Bank, which is also when schools find out their official weight. Student Council member, Camryn Milefchik, says, “

A lot of planning and work go into these events. We started by discussing and brainstorming as a group, then went from there. We try to plan as much as we can. Sometimes it’ll be as little as who can attend an event or as much as hand making things for an event or figuring out who gets taped to a wall.”

— Kailyn Sanders

From year to year, the events differ. Kailyn shares, “I’ve been involved with multiple Hunger Drive Kickoffs, going to HyVee to collect cans, trick or treating for cans, collecting cans from the middle and grade schools, fundraisers at school, and loading day.” This year RIHS took on a Halloween Night, Girls’ Powderpuff Football, and taping students to the wall!

Sanders has many years of experience, and she explains, “The Student Council tries to spread out as much as we can. We will have events at the high school, or even the younger schools. We’ll go to businesses or go door to door.” She includes, “When the middle and grade schools get involved, that definitely makes a huge impact on what we raise.” Sanders emphasizes what has worked best for RIHS, and a majority of the help comes from the elementary and junior high schools. 

The hard work and competition lead up to the final date, Loading Day. Results of the competition will be shared on that same day at the Riverbend Food Bank. The students participate during the day during the weigh in, but also at the finale event that same night. The RIHS Student Council are not known to win, but they win knowing their effort is going to feed the hungry.