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Brown Bags of Hope feed homeless in Chicago

Photo courtesy of Jeremy Cai

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Let’s Help Out crossed Hinsdale boundaries to help the homeless at the Brown Bags of Hope event in Chicago this Saturday. Students handed out lunch bags with messages of hope to encourage the homeless to keep fighting their struggles.

“Some messages included ‘keep fighting’ or ‘don’t lose hope.’ There were also a lot of inspirational quotes and poems people pulled from online,” said Hoseuk Kim, president and founder of Brown Bags of Hope.

Students woke up at 8:45 to join at the household of Ryan Smith, senior, to pack lunches. The lunch bags included sandwiches made out of ingredients donated by local restaurants such as the Einstein Bagle Brothers or the Buddig Meat Packaging Factory. Other items in the lunch bags were a bottle of water and baked goods as desert. Besides the lunches, the church of Our Lady Mt. Carmel provided socks and gloves to hand out to the homeless.

After packing all the items, students boarded a train to Chicago and split from Union Station into five groups and covered a certain territory in Chicago. Scoping out the streets ranging from lower Wacker to State Street to Michigan Avenue, students and sponsors recognized those who needed a lunch.

“In total, we handed out about almost 200 sandwiches. The rest of them, about 50 to 60 lunches that were left over, were donated to a local church in Downers Grove,” Kim said.

As it was only the second annual Brown Bags of Hope event, Let’s Help Out tried to heighten last year’s performance.

“This was definitely successful like it was last year, but it was at a greater magnitude. There were more sandwiches given out, more people were involved, more donations this time. We we aren’t there to completely eradicate hunger. We know that’s literally impossible. We’re not there to feed people for a week. We are just there for one meal, one time,” Kim said.

Due to this success, L. H. O. is planning to hold another Brown Bags of Hope event second semester. They hope to expand the event even more and promote more student participation.

“Everyone is leaving next year. The executive board is all seniors, and we are all leaving. So, we need people to take our place. We’re looking for people to step up,” Kim said.

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Brown Bags of Hope feed homeless in Chicago