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Letter: Amazing things can happen when people team up

By Marless Cuperus, Southwest Minnesota Food for Kidz Committee, Lakefield

Absolutely everything and everyone came together on Friday, Sept. 27 and Saturday, Sept. 28 at the Immanuel Activity Center in Lakefield.

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On Friday, we had all of the fourth-graders from Pleasantview who also brought shoes and over $180. We had Worthington Middle School students who brought 101 pairs of shoes and over $122. We had all the Immanuel students whose fifth- through eighth-graders stayed their whole afternoon. The seventh- and eighth-grade Student Council from Jackson County Central bagged with gusto. We had the Jackson Cub Scouts working hard after school.

On Saturday, we had the JCC Honor Society, the Spirit Lake Key Club, TSE from Jackson and the Lakefield Girl Scouts all having a good time while bagging up a storm. The Bethlehem Youth Group not only bagged, but sorted many of the shoes for us.

During both of these days we had members of the Jackson and Lakefield Lions, as well as Jackson and Lakefield Kiwanis. We had families, couples and singles who jumped in and worked — some for an hour, some for a day, some for the whole event. Crop Production Services helped with set-up on Friday, and the Jackson County Sheriff’s folks came for take-down and final loading. We had folks who made cookies and bars, as well as folks who bought T-shirts, brought shoes and/or made donations.

We had people doing what they could, where they could, when they could. We had folks who had come for every bagging, and folks who had never come before. We all worked together and had an incredible, wonderfully successful event. The shoes will go to Afghanistan, with about half the meals on an Air Force cargo plane for free through the Lamia Foundation started by three-star U.S. Air Force Gen. John Bradley. The remaining meals will go to Honduras to an orphanage and street children feeding station that we have supported for a number of years.

We can’t begin to say thank you to all of the workers, groups, donors and sponsors. We needed everyone of you to make this happen. What a blessing it is to work hard, have fun and do a good thing, too.

In all, more than 350 people helped bag 122,520 meals, raise over $17,000 and gather hundreds of pairs of shoes.