Conway Grammar School holds fourth mini Monte’s March

  • Students at the Conway Grammar School march around the school on Tuesday in support of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Students at the Conway Grammar School march up the school’€™s driveway on Tuesday in support of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

  • Students at the Conway Grammar School march around the school on Tuesday in support of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Students at the Conway Grammar School participated in a mini €˜Monte’€™s March around the school grounds on Tuesday, raising awareness of hunger in support of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

  • Students at the Conway Grammar School participated in a mini €˜Monte’€™s March around the school grounds on Tuesday, raising awareness of hunger in support of the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Staff Photo/PAUL FRANZ

Staff Writer
Published: 11/26/2019 6:24:29 PM

CONWAY — Three meals come from each dollar donated to the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

As a result, the nonprofit organization will be able to provide 9,000 meals thanks to efforts at Conway Grammar School on Tuesday.

Students and staffers helped raise about $3,000 as part of the fourth annual miniature Monte’s March, a small-scale replica of the 43-mile hike from Springfield to Greenfield that WRSI The River radio host Christopher “Monte” Belmonte has led each of the past 10 years to fight hunger in the region.

The pint-sized marchers — many holding signs with messages raising awareness about hunger — and educators left the school building at around 11 a.m., and walked down Fournier Road before turning around and heading up the road and through the parking lot. Principal Kristen Gordon explained students in grades three through six walked 1 mile, while those in kindergarten through second grade marched a half-mile.

“I think it’s a great event,” she said. “As a principal, I always like to do something around Thanksgiving, because it’s about being thankful and giving.”

Sixth-grader Malcolm Howard said people should not have to choose between paying their electric bill and feeding their children. Classmate Whitney Campbell said it is important to remember food is not the only thing people need to survive.

“Some people don’t have shelter. Some people don’t have water. Some people don’t have a family. Some people are living alone,” she said. “That’s tough.”

Sixth-grader Julia Morse said Americans are not paid enough, some having to work three or four jobs to make ends meet.

“And I think that’s the problem,” she said.

Gordon said each year around this time the school’s curriculum touches on issues of hunger, and Belmonte came to speak with the students about four weeks ago.

“Some of the older kids really started asking good questions this year and last about, ‘Why are we in this position, and what can we do as a country to help?’” she said.

Gordon said the event started four years ago when staff members approached her with the idea during her first fall season at the school. She said the school has raised roughly $3,000 each year.

Reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 262.


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