Western Michigan University’s Delta Sigma Phi fraternity has partnered with nonprofit CALTRAN to raise money to open a restaurant for college students who suffer from food insecurity.
The fundraiser known as Broncos Kitchen, is hoping to raise $1.3 million to open a restaurant with a food truck that will serve meals at WMU and Kalamazoo College. The money will also provide operational revenue for the restaraunt. Delta Sigma Phi President Matt Schuster said the focus is in the name.
“This is something that we’re building specifically for college students,” Schuster said. “We will not turn away any college student that comes to us for food.”
Schuster hopes that students who need food can have one meal a day from the food truck. The food won’t be just a wrapped-up sandwich and a water bottle, it will be fresh food made in the truck, he said.
According to the College and University Food Bank Alliance, 30% of college students suffer from food insecurity. Schuster said students at some universities are told to eat cheap foods like ramen, which is another reason to help.
“This is something that needs to be done,” Schuster said. “People who are working really hard to go to college and to follow their dreams and to form the rest of their lives, they need to be taken care of and the core of that is making sure that they are fed.”
College students have a lot on their plate with classes, homework, part time jobs and paying the bills. Schuster said he believes food insecurity is the one thing that will test students, which is one of the reasons why he believes this will help them.
“I’m afraid that more assistance isn’t given or if someone doesn’t do something soon then you’re going to drive college students into the ground and someone needs to stand up,” Schuster said.
The restaurant is not meant to compete with other efforts tackling food insecurity. Schuster said, the restaurant will be in addition to other efforts being done around campus.
“We want to be able to add to the amount of the support there is here for students,” Schuster said.
The chapter has raised $430 so far and hopes to reach their fundraising goal by August and begin serving students in October. You can donate by going to Bronco Kitchens GoFundMe page or by mailing a check or money order to:
P.O. Box 2632
Kalamazoo, Michigan 49003