Abraham Lincoln once said “To ease another’s heartache is to forget one’s own.” Oftentimes we get stressed with our own struggles. One way to forget about those struggles is to help serve someone else. That is exactly what the staff, faculty, and students from Ross Medical Education Center in Kokomo, Indiana decided to do this spring. They decided to serve their community by partnering with local organizations to help meet basic needs.
In 2017, the United Way took a poll with the people they serve and asked what their greatest concern was when they needed help. More often than not they stated that they were concerned with where they were going to get their next meal from. Since then they have partnered with different businesses and organizations in the local area to support those who are in need of food.
The Ross campus works with Food Finders from Lafayette, Indiana and is able to host a mobile food pantry right in the Ross parking lot. They then have 100% participation from their staff, faculty, and student population. “Our local newspaper is great at covering the day for us,” shared Campus Director Shannon Spencer. “They do weekly updates in the paper when we are hosting the mobile food pantry and even come out the day of take pictures and participate in the give away with us.”
It was a little colder the volunteers would have liked this March, but they braved the cold and focused on serving others. Students unpacked the truck and set up an assembly line with free food. They then took turns “shopping” with each client through the line before helping them take the food to their cars. To to they they loaded boxes and baskets with food onto carts that they were able to pull to their cars. “While shopping with them you get to hear stories why they are in need, hear about their families, and many many thank you’s. There is nothing like seeing the smiles on their faces when you help them to their car with boxes full of food,” shared a student in the morning Dental Assistant class. “For those two hours, I got to focus on helping someone else, which is what we do in the medical field,” explained David Veercamp, a student in the Medical Insurance Billing and Office Administration class. The campus was thrilled to be able to help 332 people with free food during this event.