Event set to benefit Philippine disaster survivors

Many of the meals expected to be packed in Minot Nov. 23 through Feed My Starving Children will go to aid disaster victims in the Philippines, local coordinators have learned.

Once Minot food packages are trucked back to headquarters in Eagan, Minn., Feed My Starving Children will immediately ship a container of meals, about 272,160 servings, to its Philippines partner to help with Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts.

Verla Rostad, co-chairman for the event, said the Philippines disaster response is over and above Feed My Starving Children’s usual supply commitment, which includes providing meals to more than 70 countries.

Minot volunteers are expected to pack about 400,000 meals at a mobile site to be set up Nov. 23 in the North Dakota State Fair Center. Feed My Starving Children sends a few advisers to mobile sites, along with packaging equipment and large trailers loaded with dried rice, vegetables and minerals specifically formulated for malnourished children.

Rostad said openings for about 300 volunteers exist on the 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. shift. During a two-hour shift, a team of six to eight volunteers will package enough meals to feed a family of five for a year. Money has been raised through donations to cover the cost of the food and shipping so there is no financial obligation for new volunteers.

People can volunteer at (www.fundraising.fmsc.org/minot), send an email to minotnd2013@gmail.com or call 833-1655. Volunteers need to sign up by next Tuesday.

People who wish to donate financially also can do so at (www.fundraising.fmsc.org/minot), or they can donate directly to the Philippines relief effort at (www.fmsc.org/Philippines).

Feed My Starving Children is a national nonprofit formed in 1987.The organization reports 92 percent of donations go directly toward the food program, with 8 percent to administration, overhead and fund-raising.