MADISON -- To help stock the shelves at the brand new St. Vincent de Paul food pantry in Madison, 10 Catholic schools in and around the Madison area are holding a food drive during Catholic Schools Week.
The food drive has a goal of 20,000 pounds of food donations, which are encouraged to be "earned" by the students of the combined schools, as well as any monetary donations collected.
Highlighted by the Catholic Schools Week theme of "Celebrate Service," the drive is just one way in which Catholic schools serve their community. Throughout the year, schools in the area participate in many activities to help with poverty and hunger, including food drives around Thanksgiving and the Hunger Walks at Blessed Sacrament School and St. Dennis School in Madison that help raise money for the food pantry.
"Their main focus is service," said Diane Sullivan, a St. Maria Goretti School parent, member of the parish's chapter of the local St. Vincent de Paul conference, and one of the organizers of the drive. "And, obviously, with the food pantry's need being so high, we thought that it would work well together."
The drive will benefit the new food pantry, recently built at its location on Fish Hatchery Rd. on the south side of Madison. The food pantry is operated by the Madison Society of St. Vincent de Paul and is the busiest food pantry in Dane County.
The pantry is expected to move from its current location into the new building beginning January 30, and the new facility will open for operations on February 2. The grand opening for the facility, which is still being completed, is not scheduled to happen until May.
The Catholic Schools Week food drive will involve the nearly 3,000 students at Blessed Sacrament School, Edgewood Campus School, Edgewood High School, Our Lady Queen of Peace School, St. Ambrose Academy, St. Dennis School, St. James School, and St. Maria Goretti School, all in Madison; Immaculate Heart of Mary School, Monona; and St. Francis Xavier School, Cross Plains.
For more information on the Madison Society of St. Vincent de Paul, visit www.svdpmadison.org