Twenty members of student society KSV Franciscus raised over 2500 euros for the Wageningen food bank by fasting for 24 hours.
The activity was organized by the Fiducia foundation, set up to inspire students to do voluntary work in Wageningen. Dianne Smits (19), a BSc student of Food Technology and the foundation’s treasurer: ‘Fiducia was set up by KSV members and it mainly targets KSV members. We run a lot of activities with old peoples’ homes and care facilities for people with disabilities in Wageningen. We also organize a benefit dinner every year for a different local cause.’
When the Wageningen food bank asked the students of the Fiducia foundation for help, they couldn’t refuse. ‘So we had to think of a coronavirus-proof activity,’ says Smits.
Asking for sponsorship for a 24-hour fast seemed an appropriate way of drawing attention to the food bank and raising money at the same time.’
Donate a metre of beer
The initial idea was that the donations would come primarily from KSV Franciscus members. ‘We asked for student contributions of various amounts: two euros – the price of lunch in the clubhouse; four euros – the price of an evening meal; or eleven euros – the price of a metre of lager. But in the end other people starting donating as well, members’ families and housemates. A total of 275 people eventually made a donation.’
The fast started on Thursday 28 May at 20.08. Not a random choice of starting time, says Smits. ‘The time is symbolic of the moment when we normally all get together. If you are at the bar with your mates at that time on a Monday evening, you score one point. At the end of the year, the winning group gets a keg of beer.’ Smit also joined in the fast. ‘It’s tricky when your housemates sit down for a meal. And there was a very tempting pack of cashew nuts open on the table. But in the end it was good to do this and we raised a lot of money.’