The Odessa Record -

Awards ceremony held for Odessa FBLA

 


As reported by The Record last week, the local chapter of Business Leaders of America at Odessa High School was one of only five schools in the nation singled out for their achievements in feeding the hungry. Tuesday morning, the entire student body of the Odessa School District and invited guests attended an awards ceremony in the school multipurpose room. The FBLA officers put on the program featuring speakers from the school administration, the Lead2Feed organization and the students themselves.

FBLA adviser Terri King also spoke, describing the hard work performed by the students in creating their successful backpack feeding program. Later in the program, King was recognized for bringing out the best in her students by school superintendent Suellen White and was given a standing ovation.

The Lead2Feed World Hunger Leadership Program mobilizes nearly 600,000 students across America to tackle local hunger each year. Student-designed projects were awarded $275,000 in grant prizes for U.S. hunger-relief charities and $100,000 in technology packages for winning the schools.

Five student teams from middle and high schools around the country have won the third annual Lead2Feed World Hunger Leadership Challenge. The school's nonprofit partner engaged in hunger relief, 2nd Harvest Food Bank of Spokane, will be awarded $25,000. The Odessa School District will receive $20,000 in technology products for their school comprising 15 MacBook Pro laptop computers, five iPad Mini 3s and an $800 Apple gift card.

Lead2Feed is the nation's leading and fastest growing free service-learning program, which aims to solve world hunger by teaching leadership skills to students. Since its inception in 2012, nearly a million students in 3,500 schools and clubs participated across all 50 states, donating more than 22,000 volunteer hours and one million meals to hungry families.

Lead2Feed was developed by the USA Today Charitable Foundation, with support from Lift a Life Foundation and Yum! Brands Foundation. To win the Lead2Feed World Hunger Leadership Challenge, students formed teams and created programs to end local and global hunger.

This year, more than 1,000 teachers nationwide registered as Lead2Feed members. Among the student-led projects submitted by educators, five teams were selected based on the innovative and impactful programs they conducted to combat hunger.

The five grand prize recipients were:

• Grassfield High School, Chesapeake, Va.: A team of students creatively collected over 1,100 pounds of food and raised hundreds of dollars to combat hunger in their community through events like Movie Night Food Drive with "Stacy Clause," and a school-wide food drive. They also started the "Little Grizzlies" backpack program to supply food to elementary students.

• Doss High School, Louisville, Ky.: With a team of more than 50, these students created an international festival for their community, held a 3-on-3 basketball tournament and hosted a Local Area Network party, while running a concession cart during all events. This group raised nearly $4,000 to ensure Syrian refugees had meals upon their arrival in Kentucky.

• Design and Architecture Senior High, Miami, Fla.: A team of ninth-graders collected 1,831 pounds of food equaling more than 3,000 weekend meals to students who are hunger insecure in the Miami-Dade area. These students not only support their school, but 15 local schools depend on these ninth-graders for weekend meals as well.

• Odessa High School FBLA, Odessa, Wash.: Seven local students raised more than $8,800 to sponsor 55 food kits over 35 weeks for students in need. Students also created a sustainable backpack initiative made available on weekends when the majority of hunger agencies are closed to ensure that no community member was left hungry.

• The Harbour School at Baltimore, Owing Mills, Md.: This group of motivated students utilized 3D printing technology and social media to drive awareness around local hunger issues across Maryland and 10 other states. The school united with a local middle school to raise over 200 pounds of food. This is the second year The Harbour School has won the Lead2Feed grand prize.

"Inspiration is one of the many words that come to mind when I think of the hundreds of thousands of students finding ways to combat and understand world hunger in their local communities," said David Novak, executive chairman of Yum! Brands, Inc. "Lead2Feed provides the opportunity to teach the next generation of leaders how to lead the right way – with compassion and understanding – this program is making the world a better place for generations to come."

Novak appeared via video to thank and congratulate the Odessa FBLA students for winning one of the five national awards. Linda Spahr, representing the Lead2Feed organization in person, traveled all the way from Maryland to make the award to the FBLA and its partner charity, 2nd Harvest Food Bank of Spokane.

The Lead2Feed curriculum incorporates leadership principles from Yum! Brands' Executive Chairman David Novak's book, TAKING PEOPLE WITH YOU: The Only Way to Make BIG Things Happen.

Students get hands-on experience with Novak's idea that the only way to make big things happen is to have other people on your side. "We are very pleased to be awarding these students for the admirable work they have accomplished in their communities through the Lead2Feed Program this year," said Diane Barrett, president of the USA TODAY Charitable Foundation. "After launching the Lead2Feed program only three years ago, we are amazed to see the experiences this service-learning program has brought to students each year."

 

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