Cassandra Yerger, Action Team Captain at Manatee School for Performing Arts, with her fellow Captains at a local park clean up


I am an Action Team Captain at the Manatee School for Performing Arts, and in October I was given the opportunity to organize my own event.

I decided to organize a Halloween party called “Food for the Souls” that would also serve as a canned food drive. Instead of charging money for admission, food and beverages, games and haunted house passes, the currency was canned food items.

The event was funded completely through generous donations from local businesses around our community.

We collected 2,634 cans — much higher than we expected! Our principal was very pleased with the results, and wants us to organize a “Food for the Souls” event at our school every year!

This experience for me was life changing. It opened my eyes to the fact that all it takes is one person to start something that ends up changing the lives of thousands.

Canned Goods

My advice to Action Captains out there:
If you’re looking to organize an event, go for it! People are generally more than willing to help those who are trying to make positive change.

Make a list of supplies, then talk to your team and see if anyone has connections. Networking with your connections can be very helpful in order to get donated supplies.

For any remaining items, go around and talk to businesses around your community to see if they’d be willing to help out in any way. Take the time to generate a quality conversation by explaining to them who you are, what you’re doing, and why you’re doing it.

Good luck!

-Cassandra, Manatee School for the Performing Arts