This Week's Message
This week's Friday conversation will offer a chance to learn about two newer initiatives at Augustana designed to meet student need: the Matthew 25 (M25) student emergency fund and the Augustana Campus Cupboard. The session will provide an overview of these initiatives as well as look at some initial data related to student economic and food insecurity at Augustana. We will also share information for faculty on how the referral process works for students who need food or other emergency economic assistance.
To prepare for the conversation, it is helpful to have some background information. Over the last two academic years, several intersecting pieces related to student food and economic insecurity emerged at Augustana:
- In November 2015, the Matthew 25 (M25) student emergency fund was established by a donor to directly address student basic needs specifically food, clothing, and shelter. All gifts to the M25 fund will be used for basic individual needs affecting our students' ability to learn and thrive. The fund shall provide in-kind emergency assistance to Augustana College students who face significant financial emergencies and catastrophic events that may disrupt their education. In particular, the fund provides emergency assistance for basic needs such as food, clothing, books, or housing.
- A spring 2016 sustained dialogue group began to uncover needs with regard to food insecurity of Augustana students on campus and wondered about a formal way to address student food insecurity at Augustana.
- Two Augustana students applied for and received a $5000 grant from ELCA World Hunger to establish a local chapter of the Campus Kitchens project at Augustana. Campus Kitchens is a national organization that works on local college campuses to address food insecurity by training students to work in food recovery with college dining services. Campus Kitchens at Augustana is now a recognized student organization and served their first meal in November 2016. Augustana Campus Kitchens was recently profiled in Living Lutheran Magazine.
- Based on the work of Campus Kitchens, the Augustana Campus Cupboard was launched for the fall of 2017. Augustana Campus Cupboard is located in Olin 310 and is operated from the Community Service office in CORE under the leadership of Keri Bass. The Cupboard works closely with Campus Kitchens to provide non-perishable food items weekly to any currently enrolled Augustana student.
Please join us in the Wilson Center this Friday as we look closely at these and other ways in which we all can support Augustana students. Refreshments are served at 3:30 PM and the conversation begins at 4 PM.
Kristen Glass Perez and Keri Bass
For more information on student hunger: