Go midwinter bowling for soup.

“Every person will get to choose a bowl that was decorated by students to take home after the dinner, as a reminder of those who are hungry. After choosing a bowl, every person will get a small bowl of soup, a piece of bread and some crackers to eat,” explained Megan Hopp, a member of the Chatfield High School (CHS) Student Service Club (SSC).

Hopp invited members of the community to join the CHS SSC, the Chatfield Community Food Shelf, Chatfield Lutheran Church, Chatfield United Methodist Church and St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in sharing a meal that is akin to that on which millions of people worldwide subsist year after year.

Hopp highlighted what was described as “an international grassroots movement to help end hunger.”

“This is going to be the third time this event has taken place in Chatfield,” she added. “It’s open to the public, of course, and proceeds benefit the Chatfield community and Fillmore County food shelves…the proceeds from this event go toward those who do not have enough food in our community, and it will also raise awareness for those in need. The point of the dinner is to make the public more aware of hunger. Anytime the community comes together to support those in need, it has a powerful impact.”

She shared that the SSC has had the chance to work with other organizations on projects such as this. “We have been fortunate to partner with some local churches in the past to sponsor several events, and our mutual goal is to help those in need,” Hopp said. “There are many willing youth to help work the event — we have many students that are wanting to help others, and this event is a perfect opportunity to do so. With the help of our community, we want to assist the local food shelves in their mission to feed local families.”

The challenges of co-hosting such a dinner lie in getting the news out to the community that they can help by simply dining together.

“In the past, we have struggled how best to notify the community. This year, we have chosen to hold the event right before a high school band and choir concert at the same school, hoping that this might bring in more people,” she said. “It is by free will donation…I am looking forward to the outcome of the event and seeing how many people we can help after it is done. It always makes me feel better when I know I’m helping others – knowing how many hungry people you have helped feed is the reward.”

The SSC is comprised of high school students who want to volunteer to make their world a better place in which to live.

Hopp stated, “Within the past year, we have taken on various projects. These include our fall cleanup of Adopt-A-Highway, trick-or-treating for canned foods, participating in the Help Our Neighbors leaf raking event and more. Within the next few months, we will be doing multiple different things, including, but not limited to, tying blankets for the women’s shelter, serving meals at the Ronald McDonald House, and continuing to clean our adopted highway this spring.”

Hopp cited that anyone who cannot attend is still welcome to lend a hand to the food shelves through direct donations. “Absolutely, that would be wonderful! Donations can be made directly to the local food shelves, but please come, enjoy a bowl of soup and receive a bowl decorated by our local youth. Proceeds will benefit the Chatfield Community and Fillmore County food shelves.”

Chatfield’s Empty Bowls Project is slated for Thursday, March 8, in the Chatfield High School cafeteria, 205 Union St. NE, Chatfield, from 5 to 7 p.m. Dining is by generous donation to the local and county food shelves.