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Donations, volunteers sought for meal-packaging event

Five Lutheran congregations, three Catholic parishes and Thrivent Financial for Lutherans are working together to raise money for the fifth annual Food for Kidz (formerly Kids Against Hunger) meal-packaging get-together in Rochester. The packaging will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Bethel Lutheran Church, 810 Third Ave. S.E.

The goal this year is to package 100,000 meals for hungry and malnourished children throughout the world. Ten percent of the meals stay in Rochester at Channel One food shelf. The cost of the raw materials and packaging supplies is 15 cents per meal, so $15,000 is being raised to pay for that.

The Food for Kidz group from Stewart will set up the six-hour packaging "fill." They bring all the ingredients, equipment and supplies to Rochester in a semi-tractor trailer.

Rochester is expected to provide the volunteers to package the food. Last year more than 700 volunteers from 12 churches, 10 scouting groups, 4-H Clubs and students from area high schools, middle schools and elementary schools worked at the fill.

The work is done in three two-hour shifts. Volunteer jobs on the day of the fill include setting up tables and "filling" stations, checking in volunteers, making boxes, filling bags, weighing bags, sealing bags, packing the bags into shipping boxes, reloading the semi truck, and serving food and snacks for volunteers.

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The Food for Kidz fill is open to the public, and people are encouraged to sign up to work ahead of time by calling Barb Anderson at Hosanna Lutheran Church 285-0092, or sending email to secretary@hosannalutheran.org. People who register to work on the day of the fill are encouraged to make a $5 donation.

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