Hillcrest students package meals for Rise Against Hunger

By WVUA 23 News Student Reporter Chaney Scott

“Think globally, act locally” is the motto of Hillcrest High School’s Chick-fil-A Leader Academy. This service and leadership club, which has around 40 members, gathered about 150 volunteers for an afternoon of packing meals for Rise Against Hunger

Students wearing hairnets and rubber gloves spent the afternoon filling boxes and helping children they will likely never meet. As pop music played loudly over the speakers, some students danced as they poured rice into plastic bags or taped boxes shut.

Volunteers from Hillcrest clubs like JROTC and Beta Club packed a total of 26,138 meals destined for as many as 30 countries around the world.

Meal kits contain rice, dried vegetables, soy and vitamins. For every 1,000 meals packaged, a student hit a large golden gong. Each time the gong rang out, students cheered.

Senior Morgan Taylor is one of the leaders of Chick-fil-A Leader Academy. Wearing a red T-shirt with “Impact through action” written on the back, she said this is a day she will never forget.

“This day is very important to us at Hillcrest because it brings us all together,” Taylor said. “It’s also important to the world, because 26,000 meals are being packaged for 26,000 kids. Not many people can say they got to do this.”

Chick-fil-A Leader Academy raised more than $10,000 at their recent field day to purchase the food and packing equipment. In September, they packaged more than one million books for elementary schools. In December, they held a Polar Express-themed night for local kids. 

Senior Woods Hobbs said, smiling, “Chick-fil-A really puts the ‘leader’ in Leader Academy.” Hobbs said they are still getting donations.

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