It was all-you-can-eat at Uncle Willy's buffet last Thursday night (April 22) - the best place to stuff myself with food before the 30 Hour Famine.
As I polished off my last bowl of ice cream and apple pie, I thought of all of the starving children in Third World countries who don't get the chance to binge on fried chicken and pastries before their famine.
The World Vision 30-Hour Famine started at 2 am. on Friday (April 23), and ended at 8 a.m. on Saturday (April 24). In order to prepare for the 30-Hour Famine, my family and I went to a buffet the night before, where we filled our bellies with food until we could barely move. Five plates of food and six bowls of dessert later, I waddled into our car, prepared to face tomorrow's challenge.
At Howe Sound Secondary School, there were approximately 45 students who spent the night in the school playing cards and drinking nothing but water and juice. The sound of rumbling tummies could be heard from rooms away. As bodies around me began to drift off in the wee hours of the morning, I stayed up and talked with the famine's co-coordinator, Suzanne Miller.
"I want to go into humanitarian work," said the grade 12 student. "I feel really strongly about helping those in need, and I hope to raise a lot of money."
"We're helping make a difference," said Jackie Thompson, a friend of Suzanne's and co-coordinator for the evening.
The goal of the famine is to raise awareness of starving, diseased, and poverty-stricken families throughout Africa. The money raised goes to places like Velingara, Senegal, Rwanda in Central Africa, and Ganshu, China, to provide people with lessons on how to prepare nourishing meals, make drinking water safe, prevent violence, and encourage girls to attend school. There are approximately 28,000 children who die everyday because of hunger and HIV/AIDS.
In order to stay awake and take our minds off of our bellies, there were games, music, and videos provided. Some fellow participants brought guitars and played their own, creative songs. There was also a giant Snakes 'n' Ladders game where you were your own playing piece.
Once 3 a.m. rolled around, we were all wrapped up in our sleeping bags and blankets, discussing our favorite foods. Words like "pizza", "sushi", and "chocolate mousse", started our mouths watering and stomachs growling.
Participants who raised certain amounts of money got a little something in return to say "thank you".
This year, we raised almost $1,500 to send to World Vision.