Southeast Missouri State University student publication

One Meal a Week feeds hundreds as semester ends, holidays near

Monday, December 9, 2019
Food collected from students donating to One Meal a Week.
Photo submitted by Gabrione Kent

The One Meal a Week program has collected over $10,000 worth of food since the program’s start.

The program allows students to purchase any item with an expiration date, excluding milk, with leftover meals or money and donate to One Meal a Week.

Senior entrepreneur major Gabrione Kent began the One Meal a Week program in Fall 2018 because he noticed students were wasting money on unused meals, flex and Redbucks.

All food and drinks collected are then donated to the Redhawk Food Pantry and other local food pantries. In a typical week, Kent said he collects about $500 in donations, and it seems to spike during the end of the semester and the holiday season.

“Right before Christmas break [last year], I collected on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and collected about $1,500 worth of food,” Kent said.

Students looking for volunteer opportunities can now help Kent with One Meal a Week and get credit for community service hours.

He also said for the first time since he began the program, the Redhawk Food Pantry is full, so Kent is looking for other local food pantries to accept donations.

Kent received the Civic and Global Engagement Award in May for his work for One Meal a Week. He and his team also recently won first place and the People’s Choice Award at the Innovation Challenge hosted by Catapult Creative House on Nov. 20.

He hopes to turn the program into an internship opportunity so future students can run the program when he graduates in May.

Students can donate meals on Fridays from 5 to 8 p.m. at Rowdy’s or the University Center. Meal donation hours may vary due to the holiday.

For more information or to volunteer, contact Kent via Facebook or by email at