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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

School places second in Martha’s Kitchen in first local Food Fight competition

Employees at the District Office pack sandwiches for Martha’s Kitchen on April 25. 

 Throughout April, the school participated in the first ever Martha’s Kitchen Food Fight, a co​​mpetition among six Bay Area schools to help feed those in need. Students and staff earned one point for each dollar donated, four for each pound of food and eight for each hour of volunteering.

By the end of the month, the school had earned around 12,500 points, just shy of Valley Christian’s 14,000 points. 

Despite the high placement, activities director Kristen Cunningham wants students to focus less on the points and competition and more on the spirit of giving itself. 

“I’m a firm believer of — and have experienced myself — [the fact that] that giving is an extremely rewarding feeling, especially when it’s to someone in need,” Cunningham said. “As both a parent and a teacher, my motto is always to give more than you receive, and that’s a value that I really want to instill in our youth before sending them off into our community.” 

Two large food containers were placed around the school, one each in the quad and school entrance, and the district office also helped package sandwiches for the organization, decorated bags to hand out food in and filled up their own food bin. 

Assistant principal Matt Torrens also led two volunteer shifts during Spring Break; however, due to low participation, Cunningham decided to take 21 leadership students on a field trip to Martha’s Kitchen on April 28, the last day of the event, to encourage students to continue volunteering in the future. There, they used the canned food — picked up earlier in the week from the participating schools — to create food kits for those in need.

After their volunteering session, one of the shift leads at Martha’s Kitchen also shared her story on how, as a child, she had gone every day to the food bank with her brother because her family was food insecure. Her experience inspired her to work for a food bank. 

“We definitely have a lot of privilege at Saratoga, and I think that being able to go and open our eyes to the fact that not everyone has a hot meal was really eye-opening for a lot of students,” Cunningham said. 

The event was organized by a collaboration between the school’s Hunger At Home and LEO clubs. Martha’s Kitchen invited the school to the event after the two clubs packaged 270 sandwiches with the “highest standard” for the organization. Hunger at Home had also previously hosted another food donation event in December. 

“I really hope that the school can continue this work [volunteering and community service] in the future,” Cunningham said. “Not just once a year with Martha’s Kitchen Food Fight or during seasons of giving, but year-round. Having that spirit of giving embedded in the culture of Saratoga can really make a huge impact in our communities, and I want to encourage students to continue this work.” 

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