The Empty Bowl helps hungry children in the Valley

By Mackenzie Patterson - email

COLUMBUS, GA (WXTX) -  The Empty Bowl is an annual event that gives 100% of its proceeds to Feeding the Valley Kids Cafe.  Every month feeding the valley provides about 3,000 meals to kids who otherwise would be going to bed hungry. Empty Bowl raised almost $6,000 providing food for about 15,000 meals for kids in need.

Sandra Williams said her favorite food is macaroni and cheese.

"Because it's cheesy," said Sandra.

The 8 year old and her younger sister do not know what it would be like to not be able to not have a warm meal at night.  Sandra's mom, Jenine Williams, told News Leader Nine she is grateful for this.

"Just can't even imagine.  Just can't imagine it.  So there are just no words for what it must be like to not be able to feed your children at night," said Williams

That is why they came to Columbus Parks and Recreation's Empty Bowl.  The event was $10 per ticket to pick a handmade bowl, enjoy a bowl of soup, and then get to take the bowl home.

It does not sound like much, but Lisa Castile with Parks and Recreation said every $10 is about 25 meals for kids.

"What we're able to do is give them donated money and Feeding the Valley has been able to up the meals they give with fresh fruits and vegetables and expand the number of sites," said Castile.

Kids Cafes are near schools and residential areas so children can come get a meal even without their parents.

"It is especially important to kids.  That fact that if you don't have a good meal it's hard to study.  If you don't have a good meals, it's hard to go through school," said Castile.

Empty Bowl has raised about $40,000 since 1996.  Williams said it's not only an opportunity to give back, but a good time to teach her children a lesson.

"It's a good chance to explain to them you need to do things for others," said Williams.

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