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St. Anne's students help pack meals for project

Some of the middle school students from St. Anne's helped package meals for the Feed My Starving Children project at St. Joseph's Church in Amery on Thursday, Dec. 2. Pictured are Anna Pasno, Kaitlyn Struemke, Kaleigh Wink, Sarah Vater, Kent Wink (parent) and Nick Thoreson.

Several middle school students from St. Anne's School took part in packaging meals for the Feed My Starving Children project on Thursday, Dec. 2, at St. Joseph's Church in Amery.

Approximately 49 students and 18 adults participated in the service project.

"A parent suggested we look into a Feed My Starving Children project," said Michelle Rochel, St. Anne's middle school teacher. "What a perfect way for our students to realize how much we have and how much we waste in our country."

The group made the trek to Amery after school. After watching a movie about the kids who benefit from the program, they all donned hairnets and got to work.

The packaged meals consisted of dried chicken, vegetables, soy protein and rice.

"Each bag has six cups and one meal consists of one cup of this mixture reconstituted with water," said Betsy Foster, a parent who attended the project with her student.

For two hours, the group -- along with parishioners from St. Joseph's Church -- scooped the food, labeled bags, weighed the bags, sealed them, and packed them into boxes for shipping.

Far from being monotonous work, Rochel said the students had a good time.

"They turned up the radio and all of us were able to enjoy upbeat music," she said. "I really think the kids enjoyed seeing their teachers out of their classroom mode."

By the end of the two hours, they had packaged approximately 110 boxes with 36 sealed bags each -- enough meals to last for one year for 62 kids in needy countries.

Rochel said that she would like to continue participating in this event.

"It is my hope to do this as an annual service project through St. Anne Catholic School," she said.

"Our principal and his wife joined us and they were very impressed with the kids' positive attitudes and their willingness to serve others."