Contact: Abigail Fota, College Relations Associate - Media, 610-740-3790
Iva Tchomakova, College Relations Intern

Students Sponsor Fundraisers, Donate Meals and Volunteer at Local Agencies to Raise Awareness for

Cedar Crest Continues to Highlight the Plight of the Impoverished

Allentown, PA (November 14, 2003)- The two biggest trends responsible for the rise in homelessness are a growing shortage of affordable rental housing and a simultaneous increase in poverty. In an effort to raise awareness about hunger and homelessness, the Cedar Crest College Lutz Center for Community Service and student volunteers will sponsor a variety of campus activities highlighting the plight of the impoverished from Saturday, November 15 to Saturday, November 22, 2003. This week is a national week co-sponsored by The National Coalition for the Homeless and the National Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness. The purpose of the week at Cedar Crest is to promote awareness among college students of the issues of hunger and homelessness at the local, regional, national and international levels.

"This week of events is all about giving students perspective about the world around them," said Lauren Ambrogio, Program Assistant for Hunger and Homelessness Awareness. "The events are designed to allow students to realize that hunger and homelessness are problems that everyone should recognize. Hunger and homelessness are problems experienced not only in other countries, but also in our community as well."

Current statistics provided by the Lehigh Valley Coalition on Affordable Housing's Sixteenth Annual Lehigh Valley Shelter Census show that 2,704 men, women and children were housed in the Lehigh Valley's ten shelters in 2002. Of this number, 25.6% of adults were employed and 65.2% of adults had attained at least a high school diploma, GED or post-secondary schooling. These statistics demonstrate the need for an understanding of the region's homelessness problem.



Monday, 11/17: Oxfam Hunger Banquet, from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Developed by Oxfam, the Hunger Banquet serves as a metaphor for how food and other resources are unequally distributed in the world. Students will be divided into three categories:
· 15% will represent the population falling into the high-income group
· 30% will represent the population falling into the middle-income group
· 55% will represent the population falling into the low-income group

Students in the high-income group will receive a meal that many Americans are used to: salad, meat, a beverage and dessert. Students in the middle-income group will receive rice, beans, fruit, and water. Students in the low-income group will receive rice and water and must eat on the floor.

Tuesday, 11/18: New Bethany Ministries Child Care, from 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Students will be providing childcare for low-income families while the parents participate in life skills classes.

Wednesday, 11/19: Second Harvest Food Bank, from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Cedar Crest students will have the opportunity to help at the Second Harvest Food Bank by sorting and distributing food to local food pantries.

Wednesday, 11/19: Walk-A-Thon, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Team volunteers will participate in a Walk-a-Thon throughout the campus to raise money for the Lehigh Valley Chapter of Habitat for Humanity.

Wednesday, 11/19: Annual Faculty/Staff/Student Volleyball Game, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Students and faculty will compete in a volleyball game to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.

Thursday, 11/20: Donate-a-Meal, will occur during the regular lunch hours.
Students will sign off on their meal plans for the day and donate the money to Habitat for Humanity.

Friday, 11/21: Thanksgiving Basket Assembly, from 3:00 p.m.
Students will be assembling baskets of Thanksgiving food for Northeast Ministries, which will be delivered to low-income housing developments in Allentown and Bethlehem.

In addition to the schedule of events, a series of fundraisers and clothing drives will also be held on the campus to benefit the Sixth Street Shelter, The Salvation Army and Thrift Shops. Pet food will be collected for Doggie Donations and Kitty Kontributions and the Art Society will also be auctioning off hand-made plates and donating the proceeds to Habitat for Humanity.

The College's observance of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week underscores Cedar Crest's commitment to community service. Last year, Cedar Crest students volunteered more than 18,000 hours of community service throughout the Lehigh Valley area. For more information, please contact the College Relations Office at Cedar Crest College at 610-740-3790.

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Abigail Fota
College Relations Associate - Media


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