During her freshman year at Vanderbilt University, Kelly Salina was looking for a place to volunteer. She had just moved to Nashville from Chicago and wanted to get involved in her new community. While at an activity fair, she found Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee and instantly wanted to support our mission.
What started as an interest in giving back has turned into years of Kelly donating both her time and money to families, children, and seniors at risk of hunger.
Now graduated and living in New York City, we recently caught up with Kelly and asked her why she continues to be passionate about Second Harvest and ending hunger in Middle Tennessee.
1. Why is fighting hunger important to you?
It’s heartbreaking knowing that there are people that are unable to get one of the most basic needs of survival. Fighting hunger means giving people hope and a better quality of life. People who are suffering from hunger cannot be as productive, and children aren’t able to develop properly. Fighting hunger gives people the chance to live a successful life.
2. How have you seen your donations impact the lives of hungry children, families, and seniors?
The donation of money has a tremendous impact on the lives of hungry children, families, and seniors, but it is when I have given my time that I can truly see how much we can make a difference in the lives of others. Volunteering at the mobile food pantry is probably one of the best ways to see and hear about the effects first hand. It truly is incredible.
“Fighting hunger gives people the chance to live a successful life.”
3. You no longer live in Tennessee, why do you continue to support Second Harvest?
Second Harvest made such a big impact on me during my four years in Nashville. The work that is being done to help so many people is amazing. I remember the first time I visited Second Harvest and learned about all the programs they have in place to help the community; I was in awe and immediately called my mom afterwards to share that with her. Although I am no longer in Nashville and can’t give my time, I’m happy I’ve been able to support their incredible mission financially.
4. Why do you think it’s important to give back?
This is hard to answer because I grew up with a family that values giving back, so it’s just a part of who I am. It’s the right thing to do, to try and make the world a better place. What kind of world would we live in if we didn’t?