Students to sleep outdoors, host food drive

Elizabeth Brennan

Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, beginning Nov. 15, is set to include a Fair Trade craft sale, a “sleep- out” at the Oreo and a presentation from Art Simon, founder of Bread for the World.

The week-long event, sponsored by Campus Ministry, will help educate the Villanova community about the issues of poverty around the globe.

“Our main focus is to teach people about living in solidarity,” said junior Victoria Stork, the public relations co-chair of the Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week. “The types of people who are homeless went through things that I didn’t realize would cause homelessness. They experience unfortunate circumstances and most of them aren’t related to drugs or alcohol.”

Throughout all of next week, various events will take place both on- and off-campus in which all students are invited to participate.

To kick off the week, there will be a food drive in Wayne, a Hunger Run/Walk starting at the Oreo at 12 p.m. and a Peace-A-Pizza fundraiser in Rosemont on Sunday.

Coupons for the fundraiser will be distributed at the Campus Ministry Office, and 20 percent of purchases will be donated to Project H.O.M.E., a nonprofit organization whose goal is to end homelessness in the city of Philadelphia.

“Our hope is that everyone goes to at least one [event],” Stork said.

In addition to the events on Sunday, others include can collections, reflections, a food drive, a clothing drive and several speakers.

Art Simon’s organization, Bread for the World, is a Christian group that works to make people aware of hunger and to help end hunger around the world.

Bread for the World hopes to help the 1.02 billion people who go to bed hungry every night across the globe.

Simon is the author of several books including “Bread for the World,” which won the national Religious Book Award.

The book was described by Nobel Prize economist Gunnar Myrdal as a “clear and convincing” analysis of world hunger.

Simon is also the author of the book “The Rising of Bread for the World: An Outcry of Citizens Against Hunger.”

He will speak in the Driscoll Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 18, preceded by a light reception at 6:30. After the talk, Simon will sign books at 8:30 p.m.

During last year’s Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, over 130 runners signed up for the Hunger Run, raising over $1,300.

At the sleep-out last year, 35 of the 50 attendees slept outside the entire night.

Last year’s food drive collected approximately 800 cans and the turkey drive accumulated 132 turkey dinners from faculty members.

Organizers say they hope that the entire Villanova community will come out this year to show their support for the cause.

More than 750,000 men, women and children are without homes in the United States alone.

“Hunger and homelessness do not have boundaries in countries,” Stork said. They are both a problem everywhere.”