(Gillian Niesel)

Gillian Niesel

Monarchs Win Big For The Food Bank

June 9, 2016

Menchville students and staff presented the Peninsula Foodbank with a check for $25,000 on Monday, June 6th – the direct result of being a first place winner in the 2015-2016 Lead2Feed challenge. Menchville High School was also one of only five schools in the nation singled out for their efforts of feeding hunger in the community. In attendance at the ceremony were School Board members  Shelley Simon and Gary Hunter.   Nancy Sweet and Mike Nichols from NNPS administration were also present.   Peninsula Food-Bank representatives attending were Donna Tighe, Karen Joyner, and Michele E. Benson. Linda Spahr, representing the Lead2Feed organization was also in attendance, traveling to Newport News from Maryland for the event.

Bobby Surry giving opening remarks
Gillian Niesel
Bobby Surry giving opening remarks

After opening remarks from Principle Bobby Surry,  Spahr, a worker for the Impact on Literacy and Learning Foundation, filled in for Lead2Feed founder David Novak; recapping the schools accomplishments and presenting Menchville and it’s partner organization, The Peninsula Food-Bank, with the grand prize. “You repeated your success, stepped outside of the box, upped your game, and we couldn’t be more proud of you,” she said.

Novak  congratulated Menchville via video on its contributions to the community over the past two years, and pushed them to continue the program in following years.

David Novak in his personal Video Message
Gillian Niesel
David Novak in his personal Video Message

Menchvilles L2F advisors, Diane Zawadski and Pete Mercier,  were called upon to accept a special award from Novak on behalf of the teachers involved in this years effort.

Diane Zawadski and Pete Mercier accepting Novaks award on behalf of Menchvilles involved staff.
Gillian Niesel
Diane Zawadski and Pete Mercier accepting Novaks award on behalf of Menchvilles involved staff.

After accepting the award, a surprise letter from Robert C. Bobby Scott, member of Congress, was read by Zawadski.  “The acts of service your students have provided will help hundreds of families in their time of need,” wrote Scott.

Senior Matthew Arnold gave an inspiring speech at the assembly on behalf of Menchville’s ROTC program.

Senior Matthew Arnold speaking at the assembly.
Gillian Niesel
Senior Matthew Arnold speaking at the assembly.

“When you think about it, who else could do this? Who else, other than the mighty Monarchs? Every person in our school played a part in this,” he said. “We’ve incorporated our slogan, ‘Taking a Bite Out of Hunger,’ into literally everything we’ve done this year, because hunger is not a once and done fix. It is a real problem, and there is no easy solution. It’s hard when you don’t experience it, when you don’t see it, as most of us are fortunate to not have to; but when you recognize that it’s there, and commit to doing something about it, and actually follow through, you can do great things about it.”

 

In addition to formally receiving the check for the Food Bank, representatives Donna Tighe, Karen Joyner, and Michele E. Benson also spoke during the assembly. “Because of your help, we will be able to feed more people and help our neighbors find bridges to stability during tough times,” said Joyner.

“It takes a community to help feed a community,” added Tighe.

A final congratulatory video message from Newport News Public Schools wrapped up the assembly before recognition certificates for the involved student groups were handed out, and closing remarks made by Bobby Surry.

Linda Spahr speaking
Gillian Niesel
Linda Spahr speaking

IMG_0479Gillian Niesel

David Novak in his personal Video Message
Gillian Niesel
David Novak in his personal Video Message
Diane Zawadski speaking
Gillian Niesel
Diane Zawadski speaking
Pete Mercier speaking
Gillian Niesel
Pete Mercier speaking
The Food Banks check for $25,000
Gillian Niesel
The Food Banks check for $25,000
Allison Nuckols speaking on behalf of Menchville's Foodcubs
Allison Nuckols speaking on behalf of Menchville’s Foodcubs
Joyner speaking on behalf of the Food Bank
Gillian Niesel
Joyner speaking on behalf of the Food Bank
Tighe speaking
Gillian Niesel
Tighe speaking
Benson speaking
Gillian Niesel
Benson speaking
Menchville's 2015-2016 L2F team and partner organization
Gillian Niesel
Menchville’s 2015-2016 L2F team and partner organization

IMG_7852Gillian Niesel

 

About the Contributor
Photo of Kylee Baines
Kylee Baines, Student Advisor

Committed to graduate in 2018, Kylee Baines is also a member of Menchville’s Guitar Quartet, SAGE, and French Honor Society. She has a strong passion...

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