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A Call for Help!

Posted: October 29, 2018 — Food insecurity on college campuses is becoming an increasing concern in New York State. Governor Cuomo announced his fifteenth proposal of 2018 entitled: “No Student Goes Hungry Program,” which provides students from kindergarten to college with access to healthy meals. As a result, The State University of New York announced the introduction of its Food Insecurity Task Force, which supports and advances Governor Cuomo’s mission. According to President Anne M. Kress at Monroe Community College, hunger is one of the issues that poses an effect on a student’s retention and their ability to achieve academic success.

According to a 2018 report by Feeding America that appeared in it, Fulton County ranks twelfth while Montgomery County ranks thirteenth out of a total of 25 counties in the state of NY for the highest rates of hunger.

Fulton-Montgomery Community College is in the process of creating the Raiders Relief Food Pantry that will assist in combating the food insecurities that exists among the FM college community.

The Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society at FM will be leading clubs on campus in providing the food pantry with supplies. Earlier this October FM’s PTK attended The Fall Honors in Action Regional Conference in White Plains, NY, where they were asked by Westchester Community College and LaGuardia Community College to bring canned goods to the conference. This inspired FM’s PTK officers to take action in their own community. “Food insecurity has been identified as a national problem on college campuses. Certainly, FM would experience similar aspects of food insecurity as the rest of the nation. We are very encouraged by what our students are doing to help those who may not have enough food for themselves and their families,” Dr. Dustin Swanger, President of FM, said.

Along with several other community colleges, FM’s PTK chapter will be hosting their Week of Service from November 12-16, which is a statewide campaign launched by the New York region of PTK to fight hunger in our communities.

“The PTK students at FM, are looked to as leaders amongst our peers. They are doing outstanding work in their efforts to fight hunger on the campus. They have put out a call of help to all student clubs and organizations at FM with the thought of one small step may just start something big. I am extremely proud of our students and their willingness to help with this initiative.” Gwen Ossenkop, Coordinator of Student Activities, said.

With the help of our communities we can make a difference. Please consider a non- perishable donation or monetary contribution to the FM Raiders Relief Food Pantry. Businesses can also help by allowing the FM’s PTK chapter to leave donation boxes at their establishments.

We hope that this message reaches our community members and inspires you to take an active in supporting FM and the PTK chapter’s efforts to combat food insecurity in our community.

For further information or to drop off food, contact Muhammad K. Usman at mu90873@student.fmcc.edu or Gwen Ossenkop at Gwendolyn.Ossenkop@fmcc.suny.edu, 518-736-3622, ext. 8131.

This article was written by Muhammad K. Usman, a student at Fulton-Montgomery Community College and President of the FM Alpha Alpha Upsilon Chapter of PTK.

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