As a freshman in high school, Namilla Sanchez decided to take a stand against hunger in America.
Her English teacher assigned her class to do a presentation with the objective of it making an impact. As an athlete, she decided to do her research on nutrition, since it has always played such a crucial role in her performance. She focused on providing the facts for obesity and malnutrition.
As she conducted her research, she became aware of the statistics surrounding the number of people that are food insecure in America. Her curiosity led her to
research more on food insecurity, which ultimately lead her to the Feeding America website. Here she found ways in which she
could help end hunger in America and found that Feeding South Florida is the operating branch in her community. She decided to attend one of their volunteer shifts at the warehouse with her mom.
At the warehouse, she learned how Feeding South Florida logistically provided food to the members of her community and wanted to get more involved.
Because there is little to no awareness that this problem takes place in our own backyards, she became an advocate for the cause.
Her mom encouraged her to start her own organization so she can raise awareness amongst the youth. So she did. She immediately filed all the necessary documents so that Smiling Tummies, a name that occurred to her as she was watching a cooking show on tv, could become a non-profit organization. She discussed her plans and goals with her family and friends and together, they became the proud board members of Smiling Tummies, Inc.
As advocates of the cause, they began gathering their colleagues, friends, and family to volunteer monthly at the Feeding South Florida warehouse to raise awareness and start making a difference in their community. Eventually they were able to start hosting their own events such as food drives and food distributions and today they continue to work hard to provide aid to those in need and raise awareness, teaching those they encounter that anyone, regardless of age, can help make a difference.
To Be Continued...