Alexandra Harper, Miss Tennessee USA 2018, has volunteered at Second Harvest for more than half her life. Hear her share, in her own words, how fighting hunger has changed her life—and how it can change yours too.
Ever since I was 8 years-old, I have been volunteering for Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee.
I even remember being in elementary school and going to pack boxes after basketball games with team members and friends.
Not only that, but for 12 years I’ve been going to the same apartment complex every Christmas to pass out food boxes for Feed the Need, a program sponsored by Second Harvest that provides meals for those in low income housing facilities. They’re even some residents who have been there since the beginning and have watched me grow up over the years.
Second Harvest is an organization that is so near and dear to my heart for so many reasons, but the main one being the enormous impact they have on the community…and it takes an ARMY to do so.
“Trust me, there is no better way to use your time than to help those in need in our own communities.”
It’s truly mind-boggling that 1 in 7 Middle Tennesseans, including 1 in 5 children, struggle with hunger every day. However, there are ample opportunities and programs provided by Second Harvest that allow us to serve those dealing with food insecurity in our communities every single day.
For example, the Backpack Program serves more than 6,000 hungry children each week by providing easy-to-prepare food for at risk children during school and on weekends. And the Mobile Pantry Program provides one to two weeks worth of groceries for more than 250 families in rural communities. These are just two examples of how this organization genuinely strives to help those in need.
As a child, volunteering at Second Harvest opened my eyes to see the world around us—the bigger picture—and allowed me to see the needs of those in my own community in a completely different light. The hundreds of volunteers that donate their time every week to assist in the food distribution process are vital to this program’s success.
Trust me, there is no better way to use your time than to help those in need in our own communities— in our OWN backyards even. From sorting and distributing food to harvesting a variety of crops at local farms, there are endless opportunities to get involved with.
Like I said, even at a young age I was able to identify the importance and impact that Second Harvest has in Middle Tennessee. Volunteering with this organization continues to change my life, and I know it can for yours to.
If you’d like to join Alexandra in the fight against hunger, sign up for a volunteer shift and make a difference in our community today!