Big Orange. Big Ideas.
Nov 05, 2013
-- By Camren Gerner, HungerU Crew
The University of Tennessee Knoxville supplied just that! While visiting the university, the HungerU exhibit was located on the Agriculture Campus between the Ellington Plant Science Building and the Plant Biotech Building. We were introduced to a variety of projects going on to help the hunger crisis both short term, as well as long term.
While on campus there was a 4-H group holding a banquet to help raise money for a service project they had planned to help feed their community this upcoming holiday season. For those of you unfamiliar with 4-H, their vision is a world in which youth and adults learn, grow and work together as catalysts for positive change.
I also had the opportunity to speak with a student who had participated in a meal packaging event where they donated the meals to a local backpack program. Backpack programs provide food on the weekends to students who receive free or reduced priced meals at school during the week. One thing we talk a lot about at the exhibit is how "all stomachs speak the same language." We all understand that feeling of hungry. Imagine if your reality was a persistent tummy grumble because you didn’t have access to food. That is the reality of one out of every four children here in the United States. The access to food is a daily struggle for so many people around the world. Understanding that struggle and recognizing ways to address and solve that problem is going to take us all working towards a similar goal; helping to fight the world hunger crisis.
One student we spoke with had a unique plan. He plans to take a six-month backpacking trip in which after he would find himself settling in Oregon. He would then create a sustainable food forest. There would be herbs on the forest floor, food-producing trees, and berry bushes filling in the spaces between. He found his only struggle to be harvesting the fruits of his labor. His plan was to create a robot to assist with the harvesting process. After all is said and done he plans to write a book about his journey and accomplishments.
The University of Tennessee Knoxville showed us that students are pursuing a variety of avenues to help the world’s hunger crisis. Opportunities to get involve exist at all comfort levels. Take a minute to explore programs currently on campus or programs on other campuses that you might be interested in seeing your campus take part in. Together we can find the solution to the world’s hunger crisis!