Sunday, December 14, 2008

Kids Against Hunger in the news!

Helping feed the hungry is new mission for couple

Local news Cincinnati.Com » Local news
Last Updated: 3:54 pm | Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Liberty Township couple is living out the old phrase "Think Globally, Act Locally."

And they have a growing number of community and church groups helping to carry out their mission.

In June, Larry Bergeron and his wife, Elizabeth, founded a charity called A Child's Hope International. The nonprofit focuses on four areas: adoptions, orphan care, foster care and humanitarian relief - including an industrial-scale food-packing operation that has involved hundreds of volunteers.

Members of the Kings High School boys basketball team will spend time at a warehouse in West Chester Township today earning community service credits by packing food mix for malnourished children. The work is part of an international campaign called Kids Against Hunger.

"This is our community service project this year," says Jake Grunkemeyer, as assistant coach for the Kings varsity basketball team. "They will get a lot out of it. They'll work on the production line and they'll see a movie about where the food goes. It makes you sick to see what these kids (in other countries) go through."

Almost every Saturday, community and church groups form four or five assembly lines at the Berean Christian Stores warehouse. Volunteers package a mixture of rice, soy and vegetables fortified with vitamins that provides six one-cup servings to an undernourished child.

The packets are shipped to food pantries in Greater Cincinnati and to impoverished areas in the U.S. and nations around the world. So far, more than 25 tons of food have been shipped.

Bergeron, 60, is a former lead pastor at Hope Church in Mason. Now, this is his full-time mission.

He says the program has grown so fast that it is starting to outgrow the space donated by Berean. Now, the food-packing operation is searching for a larger space - about 5,000 square feet of heated warehouse space - that can be used on weekdays to accommodate all the people who want to help.

"Volunteers put their heart into this," Bergeron said.

For example, about 1,100 volunteers showed up one weekend in September for a special pack-a-thon for Haiti relief.

Now, two 40-foot containers have been filled; soon to be shipped to Swaziland.

Rita Kuntz, a member of the Kids Against Hunger team, says the family-friendly nature of the packing sessions draws volunteers.

Children as young as 3 and adults in their 80s have participated.

People feel they are doing something tangible, according to Kuntz. "We even let them write messages on the boxes," she says.

To get involved
For more information about A Child's Hope International, go to or call 513-515-2611.
Copyright ©2008 The Enquirer. All rights reserved.

No comments:

Post a Comment