High schoolers weigh in for Student Hunger Drive

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Assumption and Rock Island High Schools were some of the first to weigh in Wednesday for the 27th annual Student Hunger Drive.

"It's really exciting, and it makes you feel really good about helping out the community," said Rocky senior Meagan Dickey.

Last year, the Student Hunger Drive raised three-quarters of a million pounds of food for the River Bend Food Bank. That's 11 percent of the food bank's annual distribution.

"We make a huge difference for the community," said Student Hunger Drive executive director Denise Hester.

"I think so many people are hungry, and we don't realize it, so coming here to help them is such a great opportunity we get," said Assumption freshman Julia Field.

But that staggering amount of food is used up almost as quickly as it's raised.

"That food is distributed and consumed by the needy families in the Quad Cities by February. So, it's a tremendous need, and hunger continues to grow in our community," said Hester.

That's why students say they're excited to help out, year after year.

"This is around Thanksgiving and Christmas, and everyone should be able to have a good one," said Dickey.

The competition between area high schools doesn't hurt either. Students were reluctant to put a number to their guesses, but most believed they were able to raise more than last year.

"We're feeling pretty good. I think we did better than last year, so hopefully we just did better than all the other schools and brought it to the table," said Rocky senior Abby Winfree.

The total amount raised from this year's Student Hunger Drive, as well as the winning schools, will be announced Thursday evening at the "finale rally" at the River Bend Food Bank in Moline.