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MoonTree Studios and The Center at Donaldson—Filling a Few Empty Bowls

April 1, 2014

The Center at Donaldson announces success in its first Empty Bowls project, which began in early February at MoonTree Studios, when the public was invited in on a Saturday to make clay bowls with their own hands. MoonTree’s Clay Studio was filled to the brim with eager participants, even on a snowy Saturday. The bowl-makers spilled over and even filled up the Painting Studio. Two weeks later, after all the bowls had been bisque-fired, folks came back to glaze bowls with combinations of blue, beige, green, and reddish-brown glazes. The beautiful, one-of-a-kind bowls numbered over 300 when they were arrayed on several large tables in Cana Hall within the Ancilla Domini Motherhouse for the Empty Bowls soup supper on Saturday, March 15th.


The evening’s fare was provided by Earthworks, another of the ministries of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ. The mouth-watering soup choices were Creamy Chicken Potato and Vegetarian Lentil with Chickpea, accompanied by Multi-grain and Crunchy Semolina breads. Over 100 people were served; in exchange for $15.00 or more per person, the guests partook of this simple meal, mindful of the fact that even the simple meal was more than many neighbors in Northern Indiana have to eat. Each person took a handmade bowl home to keep as a symbol of the profound impact that a single effort can make to end food insecurity in our community and across the globe.


A total of $2,167.00 was raised during the Center at Donaldson’s Empty Bowls Project. The donation includes nearly $600.00 collected from the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ Sisters during a province-wide meeting at The Center at Donaldson in early March. The money raised at The Center at Donaldson will be donated to The Food Bank of Northern Indiana (FBNI), specifically for Marshall and Starke Counties.


FBNI works to feed the hungry, increase awareness of the effects of hunger, and lead programs designed to alleviate hunger. They operate several programs to provide food to those in need, including Food 4 Kids, the Emergency Food Assistance Program, and the Mobile Food Pantry. FBNI serves over 150,000 people annually; almost one-third of them are children. Over 35% of FBNI clients report that they have had to choose between food and other necessities like medicine, rent, and utilities. One dollar can provide up to seven meals for those in need. Today, the Food Bank actively partners with local and national manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, food growers, packers and brokers to procure food. In addition, individuals, businesses, and organizations such as MoonTree Studios and The Center at Donaldson conduct drives for food and funds.

Even before the next Empty Bowls Project and Soup Supper at MoonTree Studios and The Center at Donaldson there are ways that you can help. You can volunteer at a FBNI event or in a community food pantry. You can give food, or you can give money. Contact FBNI at (800) 879-7040 or