Co-workers Unite, Collect Rice to Combat Hunger

May 2, 2008

No one should go hungry. As I eat a cookie and drink a hot cup of coffee with milk, I believe this to be true. Can one person make a difference to feed those who are hungry? How would one begin?

Pablo Barrantes contemplated these very questions, and the defining moment came to him three years ago, when he was praying, and he thought to himself, “What if I bought 50 kilos of rice to help feed those who are hungry?”

Then he took the next step and bought the rice. But it wasn’t enough. So he envisioned buying 10,000 kilos of rice. It is in this moment that we see how it takes one person to have a vision, but it takes working with others to make it a reality.

Barrantes works at Intergraphics Design in the northern San José district of Tibás, a small graphic design office with 16 workers.When he proposed his idea to buy enough rice to make a difference feeding those in need, the entire office joined in to donate, and Nadie Con Hambre (No One Hungry) was born.

Nadie Con Hambre provides rice to other organizations such as Misión Esperanza and Fundación Piedad, which provide lunches to children in six cafeterias in poor areas of San José. The rice reaches about 4,000 children daily.

According to Barrantes, Ricardo Arce and Steven Guzmán, the founding members of Nadie Con Hambre, giving out rice is not the only way to fight hunger. They believe that the rice must arrive to hungry mouths with a message from God. Ultimately, the founders of Nadie Con Hambre say they receive their motivation from the belief that Jesus is the force to fight hunger and spiritual thirst.

Since its founding in 2005, Nadie Con Hambre has launched three campaigns in which 550, 650 and 1,700 kilos of rice were collected respectively. Fundación Piedad is the largest receiver of the rice collected, but rice has also reached hungry children in the impoverished San José neighborhoods of Los Guido and León XIII; an orphanage in Sabanilla, east of San José; and all the way to the indigenous communities in the Talamanca region, in southeastern Costa Rica.

Although the Intergraphics Design employees and their families continue to donate, they cannot buy as much rice as they know is needed. Nade Con Hambre’s founders understand that they need to find other consistent donors. It doesn’t take much; just ¢15,000 ($30) will buy one 46-kilo sack of rice that can feed a portion of gallo pinto to hundreds of children who would otherwise go hungry.

To get involved and make a donation, call Intergraphics Design at 2241-6262 and inquire about Nadie Con Hambre, or visit www.nadieconhambre.org. There are possibilities for businesses to donate and bank accounts to facilitate donations, as well as Tshirts available for sale (¢2,500/$5).

 

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