The Tomah Area MobilePack for Feed My Starving Children returned again Friday and Saturday for its fifth event in 10 years.
The MobilePack is hosted every other year to allow for fundraising.
Tammy Hewuse, event organizer, said Tomah-area volunteers continue to host the event, which began in 2009, because it’s beneficial to others.
“It’s a way to make a difference locally around the world and pulls all generations together to feed God’s starving children,” she said.
It has gotten easier to put on every year because people know about it and are excited for its return, Hewuse said.
Hewuse said she appreciates watching people smile and enjoy the day,
“They’re feeling good. I like to see young and old working side-by-side, laughing, enjoying it and feeling this great feeling,” she said.
Craig Herold and his family, wife Lora and children Kenzie and Reyna, have been involved with the MobilePack since it began and even before that when it was just a field trip experience when an ecumenical youth group comprised of four area churches, went to Eagan, Minnesota for a packing event.
Herold said they’ve stayed involved because of their affiliation with the youth at their church, First United Methodist Church of Tomah, and the schools.
“We just feel like it helps give people an opportunity to do a mission trip; they don’t have to leave Tomah,” he said. “When we did the youth trips, they would wipe you out. This way you can come for two hours, and then you’ve just done a mission trip, you’ve helped thousands of children − you’ve helped make thousands of meals for these starving children.”
It’s a satisfying way to volunteer, Herold said.
“Here I get to help out people in other countries,” he said. “I would like to go and help out in other countries, but I haven’t had the opportunity ... but this gives me a good opportunity here to do that kind of stuff, help these people.”
This was not Amy Moser-Matteson’s first time participating in a MobilePack, but it was her first in Tomah.
Moser-Matteson said she takes part in these events because it’s “very important to be feeding all individuals in the world, and if I can help play my part by making meals for several individuals, I will do it.”
The MobilePack was assisted by individuals from the FMSC location in Schaumburg, Illinois.
Stephanie Townsend of FMSC Schaumburg, said what she loves about MobilePacks is visiting and interacting with the people involved in the events.
“I love the traveling, I love meeting new people, and I love hearing their stories on how they got in contact with us and the different things they do out of the country,” she said. “It’s just a beautiful thing.”
Maggie Gormick, also of FMSC Schaumburg, also enjoys interacting with the people.
“I love coming to different communities and seeing different people activated and excited about feeding so many kids,” she said. “It’s really cool to see a community pull together to not only come out and pack, but to raise the funds necessary to finance all these meals as well.”