Students at Mountain Vista Elementary did a super job supporting their school’s Souper Bowl. During a three-week period preceding the NFL’s Super Bowl, students collected 7,300 non-perishable food items, ranging from boxes of breakfast cereal and packages of macaroni and cheese to jars of peanut butter and cartons of ramen noodles.
The food is going to Southeast Community Outreach, or SECOR, for the group’s Food for Thought program which provides weekend meals to children who might otherwise go hungry. SECOR estimates that some 30,000 children in Arapahoe, Douglas, and Elbert counties don’t get enough to eat on Saturdays and Sundays.
“It’s been a good learning experience for our students,” said Mountain Vista Principal Toby Arritola. “They are realizing that not everybody has the same good fortunes as they do, so they were able to bring in food for kids their own age.”
“We stressed the fact that this food wasn’t going to the homeless or to a food pantry, which are also important” said Stephanie Bollaro, events coordinator for the Mountain Vista PTO, which organized the Souper Bowl. “But we wanted our students to understand that kids in our community don’t have enough food and we can help each other.”
Each class at Mountain Vista was assigned an NFL team and the classes had weekly contests to see which class or team could bring in the most food items that week. At the end of the Souper Bowl, an overall winner was announced: Emily Mazer’s fourth-grade class took top honors, collecting 1,149 items, followed by Zachary Milakis’ fifth-grade class, which brought in 802 items. Ms. Mazer’s class celebrated with a party and Mr. Milakis’ class helped their principal and PTO parents load what seemed like a mountain of food onto a SECOR truck.
See more photos of the Mountain Vista Elementary Souper Bowl food drive on the Cherry Creek Schools Facebook page.
“I’m so proud of our community and I just think it’s amazing to see the amount of food we’ve collected,” Bollaro said.