Your Name: Guen Vinnedge
Your Group: Saint Mark's Episcopal School
Location: Upland, CA
Years Participated: 1
First Year: 2015
This Year: Collected $140 for Foothill Family Shelter
How did you hear of Souper Bowl of Caring?I heard about Souper Bowl of Caring from the Girls Friendly Society. Our school is part of a parish that has a GFS chapter.
Why did you choose to join the Souper Bowl of Caring team?Our school supports the Foothill Family Shelter, a local shelter that helps families with children by providing transitional housing, job search assistance, tutoring for children, etc. The shelter was originally founded by our parish in 1984. The shelter has since expanded and become an independent nonprofit, and we are pleased that we can still maintain our connection. The Souper Bowl of Caring seemed like a great opportunity to inject enthusiasm and excitement into our work with the Foothill Family Shelter.
What does your group do to participate in the Souper Bowl of Caring movement?2015 was our first year of participating. We sent home flyers encouraging our students and families to bring in either a nonperishable food item or a cash donation on the Wednesday before the Super Bowl. That day, we set up two tables, one for each team in the game. Students "voted" for their favorite team by putting their donations on the corresponding table. The donations were offered as part of our Wednesday Eucharist service and then taken to the Foothill Family Shelter.
What have you found is most successful for raising cash and food items?Bringing nonperishable food donations for the Foothill Family Shelter is something that Saint Mark's does on a regular basis. Events like Souper Bowl of Caring help a greater percentage of our students and families remember to bring their donations to school. New ideas that energize our partnership with the Foothill Family Shelter are always wonderful and effective.
Was there any particularly meaningful or moving story from your collection you would like to share?I was delighted in the positive response from the entire school community to our first year of participation in Souper Bowl of Caring. Student Council students were happy to spend their lunch time making signs for the donation tables. We collected a large amount of food and a good amount of cash for the first year, and I look forward to seeing how far we go next year. Additionally, ten students spent a Friday afternoon volunteering at the Foothill Family Shelter's office for the Service Blitz. These students helped organize the food pantry. They all came back energized about continuing to support the Foothill Family Shelter and feeling good about giving their time and effort.
Tell us a little about where you donate your collection to.Saint Mark's Episcopal School was founded in 1982, and the Foothill Family Shelter was founded in 1984. We have been there from the beginning. This amazing organization helps local families get back on their feet, making our whole community stronger.
Are there any resources you feel Souper Bowl of Caring could develop to enhance your collection?I would love a high-quality image file to post on our school's social media accounts to help publicize the collection. I appreciated the custom flyers.
What does participating in Souper Bowl of Caring mean to your group?For Saint Mark's Episcopal School, Souper Bowl of Caring was a perfect fit. Our students and families love football and love the work of the Foothill Family Shelter. Souper Bowl of Caring was a fun way to combine both.
What does it mean to you?As the Student Council advisor, I enjoyed seeing the excitement that Souper Bowl of Caring added to our partnership with Foothill Family Shelter. The Service Blitz was a much-needed catalyst for us to send students to volunteer at the shelter office, which we hope to continue next year.