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MSU students set concert to aid food pantries

 

Special to The Dispatch

 

Three Oktibbeha County community organizations are designated beneficiaries of an April 8 Hunger Strike Charity Concert at Mississippi State. 

 

Scheduled for 7 p.m. in the university amphitheater adjacent to the Junction, the multi-performance event is being organized by the communities and organizations class in the MSU social work program. 

 

Admission is $3 for all. 

 

Senior social work academic major Michael J. "Mike" Dispenza of Vicksburg, one of the organizers, said the concert will feature a variety of MSU student musical talent, including the Black Voices choir, Generation 6:20, The Zack Logan Band, and individual performers Tim Lyons and Mark Reed. 

 

He said proceeds will be distributed among food pantries of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a national Catholic Church-affiliated organization, and Peter''s Rock Church of God In Christ, as well as the Casserole Kitchen hot meal feeding program. 

 

"We hope to raise awareness about local food insecurity issues, while also raising funds to support local agencies that provide food and meals for those unable to meet their daily nutritional needs," Dispenza said. 

 

Danny Setaro of Starkville, president of the local Society of St. Vincent de Paul chapter, said the monies provided by donors and fundraisers allow the organization to add more variety and balanced nutritional value to their food bags. 

 

"We also can fund special purchases such as frozen poultry around the holiday times," Setaro added. 

 

Combined, the three organizations annually provide groceries or hot meals to nearly 10,000 individuals. 

 

"These groups are making an impact, and they need our help to continue meeting this tremendous community need," Dispenza said. 

 

He said the communities and organizations class continues to seek other sponsors for the event. The three levels of support include Appetizer Sponsors, $100; Soup and Salad Sponsors, $200; and EntrĂ©e Sponsors, $500.  

 

Donations of non-perishable food items also are welcome, Dispenza said. 

 

For more information, contact Dispenza at 601-618-1573, or mjdispenza27@yahoo.com; or MSU social work instructor Sandra Edwards at 662-325-7881, ske1@msstate.edu.

 

 

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