Imagine trying to focus on your college coursework when you can’t afford to eat. Food insecurity among college students is steadily on the rise, affecting students’ ability to complete their courses or even stay in school. To earn their Silver Award, Girl Scout Cadettes Ellie, Sophie, and Zoe of Troop 73505 in Wellesley helped MassBay Community College tackle the issue of student hunger.
Statistics from national reports range from 30% to 60% of students struggling with food insecurity, with community college students being most vulnerable. Food banks are becoming a saving grace in many institutions of higher learning.
With this cause in mind, Girl Scout Troop 73505 set out to provide MassBay students with resources to cook easy, healthy, low-cost meals, while also raising awareness within their Wellesley community.
Ellie, Sophie, and Zoe met with the Food Insecurity Committee at MassBay to learn more about the issue and what was already being done. They then met with the Health Department, researched and tested recipes, and compiled a cookbook of nutritious, budget-friendly meals and food shopping tips. And by hosting local workshops, the Girl Scouts educated their neighbors about college food insecurity through local presentations and food donation collections.
Using the donations and their own Girl Scout Cookie Program earnings, these girls distributed more than 40 bags of food to MassBay students, each containing the cookbook and ingredients to create a meal for four to six people.
Ellie, Sophie, and Zoe were recently honored by the Wellesley service unit for earning the Girl Scout Silver Award, which is the highest award Girl Scouts in grades six through eight can earn. It requires a team of Girl Scouts to address a community problem they are passionate about, make a plan to address the issue, and execute it.