Imagine sitting down to an intimate community dinner with a smattering of friends and community members. The host directs you to a table where a simple spaghetti dinner awaits you.
Perhaps you think nothing of the no-frills meal that you are about to enjoy, until you notice that your neighbor is seated at an elegant table across the room and is being served her third course of a gourmet dinner and has more food than she could possibly eat. Meanwhile a family of four has been ushered to another corner of the room where they are seated and served only a small sack lunch and a glass of milk.
Finally you notice that the man who was playing guitar for tips just outside the door when you walked into the event is now standing in line to receive half of a peanut-butter sandwich and a meager cup of warm soup. As your pasta starts to leave a bitter taste in your mouth, you might question who would host such an uncomfortable and poorly distributed meal – and why.
On Tuesday, November 19th from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Northwestern Ohio Community Action Commission will be hosting a Hunger Banquet at the UAW Hall in Defiance. The meal is meant to actively illustrate hunger, poverty and wealth disparity and to challenge some of the stereotypes of the haves and the have-nots.
Throughout the night, Cory Dobbelaere who will emcee the event, will interview “actors” who are role playing the situation of someone who has been directly impacted by hunger, poverty or homelessness and how choices and events can change a family’s or individual’s life quickly. As these situations unfold, participants will have opportunities to discuss these challenges and what can be done locally to combat hunger and poverty.
This memorable and interactive experience may change the way you think about the issues surrounding social class, hunger and homelessness and is a great opportunity for youth and adults alike to learn what it might be like to struggle to provide even the basic necessity of food.
Tickets are available for purchase through PayPal at www.nocac.org or guests can reserve seats by calling 419-784-5136 ext. 1138 and pay at the door. Registration is $10 for adults or $5 for student tickets or children. Seats are limited – so people are encouraged to confirm their attendance right away. The Hunger Banquet is more than an event, it is an experience.