Members of Pi Kappa Phi fraternity at Lander University load cartons and bags of canned food into a vehicle for delivery to the Food Bank of Greenwood County. The fraternity was one of 11 Greek organizations at Lander that collected the food during a weeklong drive.
The pantry shelves at the Food Bank of Greenwood County are a little fuller as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches thanks to the generosity of the campus community at Lander University, led by members of the university's Greek organizations.
Fifteen cartons and nine shopping bags bulging with more than 1,700 pounds of canned food items were loaded into vehicles at Lander and delivered to the Food Bank on Monday, at the conclusion of a weeklong collection effort.
Laura Williams, assistant director of Student Activities, said 230 students, who are members of 11 Greek organizations on campus, conducted the food drive. They also collected pennies and spare change adding up to a check for nearly $250, which was donated to MEG's House in Greenwood.
Williams, who helped organize the Greek Week activity, said she was extremely impressed with the outcome of the effort. "The students also impressed themselves; they were proud of each other."
Executive director Barbara Turnburke said the food delivery from Lander was a welcome sight and could not have come at a more critical time. "Our shelves were almost bare. We had some canned vegetables but no fruit." Turnburke said the food bank sees an average of about 400 families a month and that the number is higher in November and December.
Alice Hodges, executive director of MEG's House, said the money the students donated will be used to purchase shoes and clothing for children who are living in the shelter. She added that the agency relies heavily on contributions from the community to pay for services it provides for victims of domestic abuse.
Lander president Dr. Daniel Ball congratulated the students who joined together to collect food and raise cash. He added, "It is truly heartwarming and comes at an opportune time with the holiday season approaching.