Empty Bowls Luncheon serves the hungry

Posted on 16 November 2016 by Ian Schrauth

Brown bag cafe feeds homeless


By: Dalila Kahvedzic
Staff Writer



Bowls, soups and sweets lined tables in SC202 on Wednesday, November 9 when the 10th annual Empty Bowls Luncheon was held on the Meramec campus. For $5, students received a lunch and a ceramic bowl made by students in Jim Ibur’s ceramic class.

Debbie Corson, Coordinator of Service Learning and Civic Engagement, said the whole point of doing Empty Bowls (a national program) is to support Operation Food Search.

“The ceramics students in Jim Iber’s classes all make bowls,” Corson said. “The professors make bowls too, so that people will be able to get their bowl and their lunch at this event it’s kind of

become just a way to bring us all together at our campus.”

Eric Nielsen, associate professor of economics, and Patty Keller, psychology professor, said they have been coming to this event for years.

“My bowl will be used to be set near my stove so I can remember this day,” Nielson said.brown bag cafe

Keller has been attending the event since it began.

“The whole idea of beating hunger and getting an awesome bowl,” Keller said “that’s my favorite part.”

Nielson appreciates the creativity of the students, he said.

Lily Polley, sophomore, played the piano as guests made their way in. She began to play in the second grade and continues it as a hobby.

Operation Food Search’s Director of Community Relations, Judy Coyman and Development Manager, Derek May, also greeted guests as they made their way in.

Operation Food Search is a hunger relief agency which focuses on ending childhood hunger and supporting families who are raising kids, Coyman said. The organization has had a long relationship with Meramec’s campus.

“It started actually as part of hunger awareness week and with the empty bowls campaign,” Coyman said.

Operation Food Search works with high schools, universities and elementary schools as well.

“It’s just become a really loving, giving event and we can’t say enough for the support that we get from the community service ofce, we cannot say enough for the incredible generosity and the talents of Jim Ibur and his students,” Coyman said. “Jim has been with us from the very beginning and we would not have this huge community event were it not for Jim and it’s just wonderful.” The Empty Bowls Campaign has now become a full community-wide event, Coyman said. Although students pay $5 and faculty and staff pay $13, any over and above donations that are received bene t the Brown Bag Café on campus.

“It raises about $12,000 over the course of the year for operation food search we really want to end family food insecurity here in our region,” Coyman said.


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