On Tuesday, April 18, the Lesotho Nutrition Initiative (LNI) held a fundraiser at Bada Bing so meals could be sent to poor families in Lesotho. Bada Bing had agreed to donate 15 percent of the proceeds from each purchase.
In the fall, LNI held a Pack Away Hunger event in which over 60,000 meals were put together. The proceeds from the event at Bada Bing will help cover the shipping costs for those meals.
Lesotho is one of the smallest and poorest countries in the world. The country also has the third highest AIDS rate in the world and has over 220,000 orphans.
LNI member Michelle Murray, ’17, had the chance to go to Lesotho during winter break of her junior year. Based on her experience, Murray would recommend that Wittenberg students take advantage of the opportunity to travel to the small land locked country.
“Overall, the entire trip was three weeks of the purest happiness and peacefulness I have ever felt,” Murray said. “They all have dreams and desires. I realized in Lesotho no matter where you come from, ‘we are all the same.’ These people struggle to have enough food, and I have a passion to do all I can to help.”
Dozens of Wittenberg students seemed to share Murray’s sentiments, as over 100 students ate at Bada Bing during LNI’s fundraiser.
“Personally, I wanted to go not only because it’ a good cause, which it certainly is, but I also have a lot of friends in the organization,” Christian Randazzo, ’19, said. “I wanted to support my friends as well as supporting the organization as a whole.”
Becky Schmittenner, ’17, was in charge of coordinating the event. Although she worked with LNI before she traveled to Lesotho, she became much more passionate about the organization after her trip.
“Traveling to Lesotho was life changing to say the least. The people of Lesotho suffer from the harsh realities of poverty and HIV, yet they carry a compassion and kindness unlike any other I have ever experienced,” Schmittenner said.
Schimittenner said that the Bada Bing managers were great to work with in setting up the fundraiser and were incredibly supportive.
“We raised a good chunk of money and it was exciting to add that to our funds for shipping,” Schmittenner said. “Knowing my efforts here at Wittenberg can help the adorable and amazing children we met have a healthier future gives me not only unconditional motivation, but hope in humanity as I see how many people truly care about making a difference on a global level.”
Those who wish to make a donation to the Lesotho Nutrition Initiative, go to https://www.lesothonutritioninitiative.com/ or make a contribution to Wittenberg LNI on Venmo.