Bennett College is One of 14 Campuses Partnering to Nourish Neighbors in North Carolina Student-led hunger challenge addresses food insecurity; a total of $25,000 will be awarded
Bennett College is participating in the fifth annual Collegiate Hunger Challenge, where it will compete against 13 other North Carolina colleges and universities. A transformative program tackling food insecurity on college campuses, the program empowers college students to create awareness about hunger and compete against one another to collect the most food for neighbors experiencing hunger. The Collegiate Hunger Challenge was created by Food Lion Feeds, Food Lion’s hunger-relief platform, and North Carolina Campus Engagement, a collaborative network of colleges and universities committed to educating students on civic and social responsibility.
During the competition, Food Lion Feeds and North Carolina Campus Engagement will award a total of $25,000 to winning colleges for their efforts to fight hunger on and around their campuses. New this year, the partnership will award one $10,000 overall prize and a $5,000 prize from each sector – community college, four-year public college and four-year private institution. Since 2019, the Collegiate Hunger Challenge has awarded more than $135,000, equivalent to more than 1.3 million meals*.
Throughout the challenge, which runs from Sept. 11, 2023, through Dec. 22, 2023, the participating colleges and universities accumulate points through various activities around addressing food insecurity and raising awareness about the issue. Since the statewide Collegiate Hunger Challenge began in 2018, 30 North Carolina colleges and universities have participated. Each school selects one or two MVP Student Hunger ambassadors responsible for leading the effort as part of the challenge. This will be Bennett College’s first time participating in the efforts of NCCE and Food Lion Feeds.
“Identifying solutions for hunger on college campuses and surrounding communities is one of our greatest goals, and we’re excited to join forces with the next generation of leaders,” said Kevin Durkee, Manager, of Food Lion Feeds. “In addition to addressing food insecurity in our communities, the Collegiate Hunger Challenge supports our educational partners.”
The Collegiate Hunger Challenge also kicks off in September to align with Hunger Action Month™, a time when Food Lion Feeds deepens its extensive existing partnership with Feeding America to highlight the impact food can have on a person’s life and inspire action to end hunger.
“With the increase in food prices and greater demand for on-campus food pantries generally, this partnership is more important than ever,” said Leslie Garvin, Executive Director of North Carolina Campus Engagement. “It not only allows our campuses to raise awareness about student food insecurity, but it also increases the visibility of the resources available to students. We continue to salute Food Lion for their commitment to addressing food insecurity on campuses and beyond.”
As part of the challenge, each school selects one or two MVP Student Hunger Ambassadors to lead the effort. Bennett College has appointed Deja Rogers ‘24 studying Chemistry as the MVP Student Hunger Mentor. Along with Sarah Mason ‘24 studying Biology and Keva Hernandez ‘25 studying Education serving as the MVP Student Hunger Ambassadors to lead the campaign. Sarah and Keva were chosen because they both are advocates in their community and exhibit a strong passion for reducing food insecurity and engaging Bennett in hunger relief activities. The faculty/staff mentor is Seria Bullen-Sata, a Bennett College Residential Director. Participating schools receive an activity fund, marketing materials, and ongoing support. The ambassador will receive a stipend upon completion of the campaign. Individuals interested in getting involved can learn more HERE.
Connect with Bennett College’s team on Instagram: @bc_feedz.
Kicking for A Cause: A Kickball Game
Bennett’s student-led team will kick off this competition with an event that is fun and engaging for the faculty/staff and students on campus. On Sept. 23, 2023 at 2:00 PM, Kicking for A Cause: A Kickball Game will have food, refreshments, and fun that will bring students and neighboring communities together to raise awareness and resources for those facing food insecurity in our state.
A check presentation ceremony will occur on Feb. 14, 2024, at the North Carolina Campus Engagement President’s Forum at Guilford College.
*$1 helps provide at least 10 meals secured by Feeding America® on behalf of local partner food banks.
About Food Lion
Food Lion is an omnichannel retailer committed to nourishing its neighbors during the moments that matter most. More than 82,000 associates across 1,100+ stores deliver an easy, fresh, and affordable shopping experience throughout 10 Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic states. Through its ‘Count on me’ culture, Food Lion fosters a sense of belonging for all associates, promoting a diverse and inclusive environment that has supported LGBTQ+ equality for nearly two decades. Food Lion is the only company in the country to be named an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year for 22 consecutive years. It also pioneered a food rescue program to support food-insecure neighbors. Through Food Lion Feeds, the retailer has donated more than 1 billion meals to individuals and families since 2014 and has committed to donate 1.5 billion meals by 2025. Founded and based in Salisbury, N.C., since 1957, Food Lion is a company of Ahold Delhaize USA, the U.S. division of Zaandam-based Ahold Delhaize. For more information, visit foodlion.com.
About North Carolina Campus Engagement
North Carolina Campus Engagement is a collaborative network of colleges and universities committed to educating students about civic and social responsibility, partnering with communities for positive change, and strengthening democracy. Learn more at nccampusengagement.org