Editorial: Give a Meal program gains success this year

 Students going to dinner at Putnam Dining hall donate flex passes to raise money for hurricane relief efforts on Wednesday, Oct. 24. (Judah Shingleton, Staff Photographer/The Daily Campus)

Students going to dinner at Putnam Dining hall donate flex passes to raise money for hurricane relief efforts on Wednesday, Oct. 24. (Judah Shingleton, Staff Photographer/The Daily Campus)

It’s not very often that you hear of college students donating their own money to charities. Sure, we volunteer and fundraise for different organizations, and we certainly do our share in trying to help improve our planet through these activities. But most out-of-college adults don’t do these things. Instead, many simply just donate to charity. As a college student it can be difficult to find the money to do this, yet the need for donations doesn’t decrease. For these reasons, the Give a Meal program held by dining services is a useful, easy way to give back to the community, even on a college budget.

This program is run every year and simply involves students donating a flex pass when they enter a dining hall. Each year, the donations go towards a different fund or charity organization. This past Wednesday’s donations will benefit those who were affected by Hurricanes Florence and Michael.

This past Wednesday’s event was a huge success and raised a whopping $8,360, the most that the event has gained since fall 2015. The success of this year’s program is especially exciting considering the drop in money raised last year, which totaled only $6,500.

UConn’s Give a Meal event is not one that requires much effort, thus you would assume more people would want to partake. Agreeing to donate one flex pass doesn’t seem like that big of a deal, especially since most students don’t use all of their flex passes to begin with. However, there are some people that think after charging so much for a meal plan at this university, it almost seems unfathomable that UConn would ask for this money back in the form of a donation. What these people seem to forget is that this donation does not go to the university but helps others dealing with tragedies and hardships that we may not be experiencing. While we do pay an exorbitant amount for meal plans, donating one swipe that you would likely have left over anyway will be inconsequential to you in the grand scheme of things. However, that money you donated may be extremely helpful to someone else in need.

The Give a Meal program at UConn is a success in the fact that it helps students give back to their community while also benefitting a worthy cause. As it is easy and accessible to students, there is no reason for us to pass by this opportunity to help those in need. This year’s success of the Give a Meal program goes to show how willing students are to give back, and our university should be proud of the continued support students give to those less fortunate.