Bridgeway Academy Participates in 30-Hour Famine Effort and Raises Over $10,000 for Needy Children
Local Homeschool Academy Engages Teens and Families in the Fight Against Childhood Hunger

(March 2, 2013) Allentown, PA – Bridgeway Academy of Catasauqua, PA, recently participated in the World Vision 30 Hour Famine Event to help end childhood hunger, raising over $10,000 during their effort. By forming a team of students and mounting a social media and email campaign for the event, Bridgeway garnered a ton of enthusiasm and donations from students, families, and staff members alike.

Said Principal Jessica Parnell, “We wanted to challenge our students to be a part of the larger world picture, to commit to a wonderful cause, and to not give up.” But thirty hours without food is not an easy thing for a ravenous teenager to pull off. It takes a lot of willpower.

“Our kids did an amazing job,” said Jessica. “They did not give up because they refuse to stand around while nearly 8,000 children under age 5 die every day because of hunger-related causes. That’s one child every 10 seconds. Our students are NOT okay with this!” World Vision allows for donated funds to be sent to the hunger “hot spot” of the participant’s choice, which include many countries in Africa and Haiti, and even in the United States.

World Vision’s 30 Hour Famine is a national organization that helps groups like Bridgeway Academy set up their events and participate in the fight to end hunger for children. In the time leading up to the 30 hours of fasting, students get a crash course in global hunger and come face to face with the realities of poverty and injustice through materials provided by World Vision. Then they come to know what real hunger actually feels like during the Famine.

Event coordinator Julie Bartholomeaux of Bridgeway Academy commented, “It’s a wonderful way for kids to realize they can make a global impact by learning about the hunger crisis, and raising money to truly do something about it!” Julie originally picked the goal of raising $3,000.00 for the organization, but that number was quickly surpassed. “I kept bumping it up as the donations grew,” she said. “And we just kept surpassing each new goal within hours.” Over 78 students participated in the event, as well as additional family and staff members.

World Vision told Julie that on average, a team consists of 20-25 teenagers and they raise about $1,600. The Bridgeway team consisted of 78 students and raised nearly ten times that amount, a success the students who participated are quite proud of.

According to Katarina Mattmuller, a Bridgeway student participant, “It was difficult, but I feel really good now. It’s hard to believe that so many children around the world have to live like this all the time. This was a very great, worthy experience.”

Mary Couch, mom to Bridgeway student Amanda, decided to participate in the event alongside her daughter. “It was very hard to watch my daughter go hungry and be in discomfort. But I knew our 30 hours would end, and we would be able to eat. It’s heart-wrenching to think about other mom’s who CAN’T feed their children when they are really hungry, and what those families go through each day.”

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