No 'Empty Bowl' Fundraiser This Year for Second Harvest

Empty Bowl on pause for 2019. Empty Bowl on pause for 2019. |  Photo: WDIO File

Updated: March 12, 2019 04:50 PM

Second Harvest is putting a pause one of its long-time events. The Empty Bowl fundraiser has been taking place for 25 years. But it won't in 2019.

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"After a successful 25 years, we think it's an important time to reflect on this event, evaluate its impact on our region and our organization," said Shaye Moris, Executive Director.  "It will also allow us an opportunity to consider how we best engage our region in our future fight against hunger." 

She said they've heard quite a bit of shock so far, about this development, from the public. They notified their parters last fall. 

"It is our biggest fundraiser, bringing in about $49,000 each year," Moris added. "We looked at our numbers, and decided we would still be able to do our good work with pausing it this year."

The event raises money through the sale of hand-crafted bowls and a meal of soup, and fills the Depot with crowds each year. It was a way for artists to showcase their work. And a way for students to learn about functional art.

It all began in the basement of the Depot, and was a couple of hours, one evening.

Now it's two full days, and the non-profit can't sustain running this event like they have been doing. "It's a lot of impact on staff, on the artists, on the volunteers. It used to be more community led. Now it's more on our shoulders," Moris explained.

However, Second Harvest wants ideas on how to refresh this tradition. They are seeking input from the public through March 31st. Here's a link to the survey:


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