In the autumn of 2019, The River Falls Community Food Pantry moved to a new location. While the move was necessary, Jennifer Willis-Rivera, director of operations for Random Acts and supervisor of the University of Wisconsin-River Falls (UWRF) Random Acts Student Organization, recognized it also meant losing a fair amount of money for supplies as those funds naturally went toward the move.
As the only food pantry in town, and one that serves 300 families a month, it was the obvious choice for Random Acts to step in and help.
Getting UWRF Students Involved
Jennifer wanted the students to be a part of the process of giving back to the community in a very real way, so she had them discuss the opportunity at the student meeting. Then, once the plan was approved, she brought three of the UWRF Random Acts members with her to the store to begin to stock up.
Together, they filled four grocery carts with healthy food and other staples for the families, as well as good-quality baby food and some other necessities. They also wanted to spice things up a little, so they bought some cookie sprinkles to decorate some treats for the shelter.
“It was lucky I have a van,” Jennifer told Random Acts. “We filled the entire back of the van while the students all traveled in one of their cars to the food pantry.”
Giving Back To The Community
At the end of the day, they were able to buy more than 100 pounds of food, diapers, formula, and other necessities.
Jennifer noted how excited the students were to be a part of this, as evidenced in the photos, and how much they enjoyed being a part of something bigger than themselves.
“I am especially happy because we are able to do good, but I know I am also helping these students to instill a lifelong habit of giving back and doing kind acts,” Jennifer said. “This is something that will be ‘normal’ for them throughout their lives now, and I think that’s just as important.”
If you want to make an impact on your community like Jennifer did, you can apply for a Sponsored Act here! We would love to hear your idea.