PCA Students Help End 68 Hours of Hunger

Annual food drive extended to school-wide community


DOVER, NEW HAMPSHIRE (October 14, 2021) – Throughout the month of October, Portsmouth Christian Academy (PCA) will be collecting breakfast, lunch, and dinner items to help local families in need through the organization End 68 Hours of Hunger.  

PCA’s annual End 68 Hours of Hunger food drive, run by the school’s seventh-grade class each year, previously only involved PCA’s Lower School (K-8). This year, the drive has extended school-wide to include both the Upper and Lower School.  

“PCA’s goal is to not only educate our students on the needs of our local community but also to provide students with opportunities to help meet those needs,” says seventh-grade teacher, Juliana Scott. 

When asked about the decision behind extending the event to PCA’s high school, Scott says, “Jordan Heckelmann, Upper School Principal, encouraged two members of the High School Leadership Team, Dylan Thyng and Abigail Oberto, to seek ways that the Upper School and Junior High could collaborate… Dylan and Abigail took the initiative and helped implement the food drive at the Upper School this fall. Not only does this collaboration provide opportunities for the Upper and Lower School to work together, it also enables PCA to collect even more food for End 68 Hours of Hunger.” 

Upper School Unity Prefect, Abigail Oberto says, “In my eyes, there’s nothing more unifying than coming together to support each other’s endeavors and our local community while having some fun along the way!”

Upper School Principal, Jordan Heckelmann likewise sees the extension of the drive as a way to further unify and connect the Lower and Upper Schools, allowing the school as a whole to serve the community. Heckelmann also sees this as an opportunity for PCA’s seventh-grade students to grow in leadership ability and serve the community. “This food drive aligns with our vision by equipping our students to step up as servant leaders and giving them the opportunity to impact the world for Christ,” he says. 

Scott shares this understanding with Heckelmann. She says, “PCA’s vision is to foster Christ-centered graduates who impact our world for good. Providing opportunities to be a light in the community provides students the chance to think beyond themselves while giving them a tangible taste of what it means to serve those in need.”  

Scott says that the best way for the community help support this effort is by donating food from the list below: 

Week 1 (10/4-10/8): Breakfast 

  • Peanut Butter – 18 oz plastic 
  • Saltines / Graham Crackers 
  • Fruit Cups – 4 pack 
  • Granola Bars / Nutrition Bars 
  • Instant Oatmeal Individual Packs 

Week 2 (10/11-10/15): Lunch 

  • Hormel Complete Meals 
  • Macaroni and Cheese 
  • Instant Flavored Rice or Noodles 
  • Tuna, Chicken, or Pulled Pork – 10 oz or smaller cans 
  • Pudding cups – 4 packs 

Week 3 (10/18-10/22): Dinner 

  • Canned Beed Stew
  • Canned Pasta – Beefaroni, Ravioli 
  • Canned Soup – 12-20 oz cans 
  • Instant Flavored Potatoes 

While certain items are requested each week, all items are accepted through the duration of the food drive. Those who wish to donate, drop donations off at the front desk at the Upper or Lower School. 

End 68 Hours of Hunger is a New Hampshire-based private, not-for-profit, effort to confront the approximately 68 hours of hunger that some school children experience between the free lunch they receive at school on Friday afternoon and the free breakfast they receive at school on Monday morning. This weekend program, established in New Hampshire in 2011, puts nourishing food in the hands of school children to carry them through the weekend. Learn more at https://www.end68hoursofhunger.org/.  

In previous years, PCA students delivered more than 2,500 food items to a local food pantry. According to End 68 Hours, PCA’s food drive has historically been the largest food drive for many years.  

Ranked the No. 1 Private K-12 School in New Hampshire by Niche for 4 consecutive years, Portsmouth Christian Academy has been inspiring students on the Seacoast to maximize their potential for over 40 years. PCA provides a nurturing educational environment that emphasizes Christ-centered community, outstanding academics, differentiated learning and exceptional character. Located just minutes northwest of Portsmouth, on a 50-acre riverfront campus, PCA is a dually accredited, independent, college-preparatory day school where young people from preschool to Grade 12 are challenged to thrive academically and grow as servant-leaders prepared to affect the world for good. For information, visit pcaschool.org