This is an opportunity to help your partner agency put on a big meal and eat with the patrons who normally get food from them. It can really help you see the impact of the work that you’re doing and hear more personal stories.
Alternatively, this could be an opportunity to invite those who receive food from the PA to the campus cafeteria, where they can be served directly by dining. This helps build the relationship between campus and the community.
You can either cook the meal together with your partner agency or use the food you recovered to make up the meal. Either way, make sure that students are sitting with the patrons.
empty bowls luncheon
First piloted in 1990, the Empty Bowls Luncheon is an opportunity to fundraise for your Partner Agency, raise awareness of food justice issues in your community, and advocate for arts education.
Guests are served recovered food in a handmade ceramic bowl, which is purchased at the door of the event. At the conclusion of the event, guests are encouraged to take their bowl home as a reminder of the event and what it represents.
This is one of the more challenging PA events, as it requires a healthy amount of promotion both on campus and in the community. The Empty Bowl Luncheon event is best executed as a component of a larger event, such as a PA dinner, movie showing event, or public speaking event.
More information about the event is located here. We encourage those who are interested in an Empty Bowl Luncheon to reach out to this organization for more logistical information.
Partner Agency Panel
A Partner Agency Panel is a great idea for chapters that have multiple partner agencies. You ask each partner agency to send a representative, and then have them all speak about their organization (what they do, who they serve, what their needs are, etc).
It’s a good networking opportunity for PAs, since they might meet people from the other organizations who they can work with, and may gain some new volunteers. It also raises awareness about your chapter on campus. Invite students and community members beyond your chapter members to this event, and consider having a member of your FRN team moderate or speak on the panel as well.
Think about what sorts of representatives you would like from each partner agency — would the volunteer coordinator be most helpful or the outreach coordinator? Also, decide beforehand what sorts of questions you want to ask and who will be the moderator. Consider asking a question (either before, during, or after the panel) to solicit feedback for your chapter from the PAs present.
Set Up A Garden
If your partner agency has the time and space, helping them set up a garden is an incredible contribution. You can grow a LOT of fresh veggies in a relatively small space. Whether it’s container gardening, a raised bed, or a full farm, growing food will contribute to the physical and mental health of all of those involved.
It’s important to decide how you will work together to keep the garden going. Will people served by your partner agency take care of it? Will your chapter be solely responsible for it? Who will harvest the fruit/veggies? Make sure you determine these details ahead of time so that the garden is maintained.
FRNDS demonstrating that a garden can yield baskets full of fun.
Partner Agencies often provide a variety of services in addition to food. Oftentimes, these agencies need items such as: warm clothing, toiletries, and other household essentials. A Supplies Drive seeks to provide these donations to your PA in addition to the food you're recovering.
There are a variety of ways to accomplish this. You can set up FRN-sponsored boxes in your residence halls (after getting permission from the staff, of course!) and encouraging residence to donate clothes that they purchase, or unwanted clothes of their own.
Georgia State University had success with this event by coupling it with another - the Hot Chocolate Stand. Students who brought a pair of new socks as a donation got a cup of hot chocolate, and with further cups going towards funding their own chapter.