Volunteers pack meals for famine victims in Africa

11:22 PM, Aug 21, 2011   |    comments
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COON RAPIDS, Minn. -- Hundreds of people showed up in Coon Rapids Sunday to pack food and possibly save lives half a world away.

The Christian hunger-relief organization, Feed My Starving Children (FMSC), pledged to send at least five million meals to famine victims in the Horn of Africa.  On Sunday, they held several packing "sessions" where volunteers packed thousands of "MannaPack" meals for the famine victims.  The meals -- just 24 cents each -- may contain rice, soy nuggets, vitamins and dehydrated vegetables.

"I want to help being a part of the solution in what's going on in Africa.  And this seems like a real tangible way to do something and you can see it means something," said Marlys Kocourek of Fridley.

This weekend's effort also represented the outcome of outreach to the Twin Cities Somali community.  Together, the immigrant community packed the food blend alongside native Minnesotans.

"The room was full of all kinds of people. That was amazing, just to know people care, people care about us," said Asha Ali, a Somali American now living in Minneapolis and volunteering for her second time with FMSC.

Given the response so far, FMSC is set to send two million meals to the Horn of Africa this month alone.  They expect they'll send eight million meals to that region by the end of this year.  Long-term, the organization plans to continue to help the region with food support.

If you'd like to learn more about Feed My Starving Children and how you can volunteer to help, just go to: http://www.fmsc.org/

And for more information on the situation in the Horn of Africa, especially Somalia, as well as other ways to help the victims there, you can check out the Minneapolis-based American Refugee Committee, at: http://www.arcrelief.org/site/PageServer

(Copyright 2011 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)

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