K-State Students Take A Swipe Out Of Hunger

MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) - The famine in the Horn of Africa ended earlier this year, but it doesn't mean that millions aren't still suffering.

Students of the Alpha Zeta fraternity at Kansas State University are aiming to take a swipe out of hunger for the second year now.
Brock Burnick is a junior at K-State and student coordinator of SWIPE - the State Wide Packaging Event. He says he wants to do his part to beat starvation in the Horn of Africa.

"I just think about how crazy it is, here in America we think so little about our day to day food need, whereas this...our so participating this one day will potentially save someone's life," he said.

Alpha Zeta's goal this Sunday was to get 450 volunteers from the Manhattan area to package 70,000 meals for famine-ravaged families in need.

Students raised money for the meals in a year-long effort, with each bag costing $.23.
Volunteers, boy scouts, college students, senior citizens worked diligently side by side, measuring grains of rice, soy beans and pinto beans into bags - each one full of vitamins and minerals.

Numana, an El Dorado-based nonprofit, says each bag goes a long way to fight hunger.

"Every six seconds, there's someone in this world who's dying of starvation," Rachelle Nebergall, Numana's Director of Events and Volunteers, said. "[Families] are receiving six meals in a bag. So this a difference between life and death for many of the people in the Horn of Africa," she said.

One of the helper at the Manhattan packaging event chairs the U.S. Senate's Hunger Caucus.

"This helps highlight the work that needs to be done," Senator Jerry Moran said. "And it's a reminder to me that I have an obligation to do the right thing in DC, that nobody goes to bed hungry around the globe," he said.

Organizers say they're not under any illusions that they're eradicating hunger - today.

"Packaging 70,000 meals is not enough to serve all of the worlds' starving. It's a small goal," Burnick said. "But if we keep growing every single year, maybe some day K-State University will lead the way in addressing some of the worlds' biggest problems."

"That's my dream," he said.

The Department of State says nine million people in the Horn of Africa are still in need of assistance.

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