Father Ryan donations will help feed the hungry

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Members of the Oak House at Father Ryan High School delivered canned food to the Hunger Relief Program at Catholic Charities, Diocese of Nashville. The school collected more than 21,000 cans of food in the drive, and donated it to Catholic Charities, Ladies of Charity and the Little Pantry that Could. Sophomore A.J. Stacey unloads a box of food. Photo by Andy Telli

Students at Father Ryan High School spread their generosity to three agencies dedicated to feeding the hungry. 

Students who are members of the school’s Oak House arrived at the Catholic Pastoral Center on Tuesday, Feb. 15, during an off-campus service day to deliver more than 7,000 cans of food and more than $1,500 to the Hunger Relief Program of Catholic Charities, Diocese of Nashville. 

The food and money were collected during a two-week canned food drive at the school that raised more than $5,800 and 21,928 cans of food, said Amy Duke, director of houses at Father Ryan. 

The school decided to donate the food and money to Catholic Charities, the Ladies of Charity and the Little Pantry That Could. 

“They came at the perfect time,” Heather Heffner, coordinator of Catholic Charities’ Hunger Relief Program, said of Father Ryan’s donations. 

After the holidays, donations often hit a lull, she noted. 

Besides using the canned food to help fill food boxes that are distributed to the hungry, the money, $1,565.57, will be used to buy supplies that the program needs but aren’t often donated, such as fresh produce, Heffner said. 

While at the Catholic Pastoral Center, the students and their faculty mentors helped assemble the 26 racks the Hunger Relief Program recently purchased to store their food donations. 

The donations from Father Ryan came on the heels of a donation of coats and canned goods collected by students at St. Matthew School in Franklin, Heffner said. The St. Matthew donations, which included a large number of children’s coats, will also be used to help those in need, she said. 

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