Ksenija Smirnova -
Food bank is a charitable activity that was first established in US in 1967. In Europe, it has been gaining in popularity since 2006. Therefore, Food bank is a well-known and significant project all over the world with Lithuania being no exception. This organization collects and stores the donated food and sends it to homeless shelters, orphanages and other places, where people are in need. Parents, who are not able to feed their children, can turn to Food bank organizations to request for assistance, especially under circumstances of unemployment and disabilities that prevents individuals to secure sufficient income to feed the families. In Lithuania people can leave a small amount of money using special donation boxes in 214 stores all over the country. According to statistics in 2010 people had donated 33 000 Euros.
Our school also takes part in Food bank. Basically, participants of this project are International Baccalaureate students. Classes are divided into small groups of students (usually 2-3 people) who are allocated a certain time to volunteer. Last time we have volunteered in March. Although for most IB1’s students it was the second time volunteering in supermarkets for Food bank, while for IB2’s it was their fourth time. As usual DG IB students felt grateful for being a part of something special and being able to directly help the organizers to efficiently make arrangements. Having talked to my classmates we all agreed upon participating in organizing Food Bank in the future as soon as there would be a possibility for that.
Personally to me, Food bank gives an opportunity to help people in need. Furthermore, I can volunteer, meet new people, collaborate and spend time with my classmates. Food bank made me see that a lot of people are ready to help the poor. However, I have some communication problems due to language barrier, because I am from Latvia and I do not speak Lithuanian, yet through volunteering opportunities like this I am able to work on improving my communication skills.
In conclusion, I can say that these kinds of projects should be developed in all countries, because each country has people that need help and those are able to help. Food bank involves us into solving or at least helping to solve a global issue of poverty. Food bank unites people. Food bank is turning to other people to open their hearts.
An IB1(on the left) and an IB2(on the right) students collaborating together to hand out the Food Bank leaflets
An IB1(on the left) and an IB2(on the right) students collaborating together to invite people to donate the food to the Food Bank charity