At a hunger banquet Tuesday, students will either dine in luxury or poverty, except the students don’t get to choose. The meals will be randomly assigned to give them the experience of a meal’s quality in relation to world status.
Volunteer USF, a volunteer organization on campus, is hosting the annual hunger banquet to raise awareness of world hunger.
“This is our third year in a row hosting this event,” said Janis Realmuto of Volunteer USF. “It is a very powerful experience.”
Last year, 400 students attended, and Volunteer USF is aiming for a similar turnout this year, Realmuto said.
The banquet is organized to allow students to experience what a meal is like in different parts of the world, said Realmuto. There are four possible meal tickets: First world, second world, third world and fourth world. Those who receive first-world tickets will enjoy a five-course meal, complete with linens. Students who get a second world ticket will be served peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or burritos. Third-world dinners will include rice and beans and will be seated on the floor.
“The rice and beans are not only to simulate what those in third world countries eat, but what is served in homeless shelters,” Realmuto said. “Fourth world is a new concept this year. Those who receive fourth-world tickets will not be dining Tuesday night. They will represent the population who die of hunger.”
Realmuto added that the majority of those who attend will collect meal tickets that represent third world countries.
The banquet will be in the Phyllis P. Marshall Center Ballroom on Tuesday at 6 p.m. Admission is free, but Volunteer USF encourages those attending to bring canned goods for donation.