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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Apr. 26, 2012 8 years ago

Give peanut butter to hungry kids

Food drive kicks off
by: Lisa Moore

Drop off locations:

Lisa Moore


3504 Lake Lynda Drive

Suite 175

Orlando, FL 32828

Tyger Danger


121 S. Orange Avenue

Suite 1430B

Orlando, FL 32801

Sheila Lafont

Fairwinds Avalon Park

12800 Tanja King Blvd.

Orlando, FL 32828

Pat Moore

Great American Insurance Company

1060 Maitland Center Commons Blvd, #100

Maitland, FL

Joe Liguori

Pizzeria Valdiano

Lakeside Village

1610 Town Center Drive

Lakeland, FL 33803

Pointe Orlando

9101 International Drive Suite 1036

Orlando, FL 32819

Waterford Lakes Town Center

421 N.Alafaya Trail

Orlando, FL 32828

Winter Park

510 N. Orlando Ave Site 103

Winter Park, FL 32789

I received an email last March from one of my colleagues, the managing partner of Kavaliro, asking if I had seen the “60 Minutes” documentary on the homeless situation in Central Florida. Upon watching the segment, I was so moved by the stories of local students and families trying to make ends meet while keeping up with their education.

When I dug deeper into the harsh reality these young people face, my stomach turned into knots. Having worked in the public school system for over eight years, I knew some of these students personally. I knew the schools that were shown on the television screen before me. I saw Oviedo's Stenstrom Elementary’s guidance counselor Terri Koepsell, a former mentor of mine, talking about the homeless students attending her school and many others in the area.

I reached out to Terri immediately and asked what she needed and how I could help. Within a week, we decided Kavaliro would start a food drive to aid the Seminole County Backpack program.

The Backpack Programs benefit students who receive free or reduced lunch or families facing financial difficulties. Each Friday backpacks are filled at the school with nutritious food to be sent home with the students, providing 10 to 15 needful families with two breakfasts, two lunches and two dinners for the weekend. The empty backpacks are returned the following Monday to be refilled for other families. Because the need is so great, the families rotate each week.

Who knew that this very humble beginning would take off the way it did? My goal was to keep it simple. Let’s ask for a couple things that people can remember, that people can get buy-one-get-one and that people can afford without straining their own finances. How about peanut butter and jelly?

Each quarter the Kavaliro food drive has gained more supporters and people wanting to help. Since our commitment to Seminole County Public School’s Backpack Program, Kavaliro has collected more than 14,000 food items through only four food drives.

On Tuesday, May 1, the staffing firm will be kicking off our quarterly food drive “Fueling the Community” with a groundbreaking kick-off event. Partnering with Press on Events and Terrace 390, the local businesses are asking friends, clients and other local companies to participate by purchasing tickets/sponsorships and donating jars of peanut butter as we attempt to break a Guinness world record and feed hungry students and families throughout Orlando. As people come to the event and donate jars of peanut butter, a 12-foot peanut butter tower will be built in an attempt to break the Guinness World record of 10-feet-high tower.

Bring your co-workers, friends and a container of peanut butter, and enjoy drink specials, free appetizers and entertainment in the beautiful courtyard of Terrace 390 in downtown Orlando from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. May 1. People can register in advance at

This quarter’s food drive runs May 1 through May 14. Drop-off locations can be found on our website, If you would like to be involved or become a drop-off location, please contact me at [email protected]

Lisa Moore is the community relations director of Kavaliro.

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