Each year, the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union Food Centre puts on a Trick or Eat event, which sees teams of students compete to gather the largest quantity of food donations from the community. This year, students came together to bring in about 2,500 pounds of food.
Those 2,500 pounds came in the form of 282 bags of food from the community, which were donated alongside a total of $480 in monetary contributions. The first-place team, named Sticky Sweet, gathered 46 of these bags and brought in a whopping $265.
Sticky Sweet’s contributions made up a sixth of the food donations and over half of the monetary donations brought in this year. With the win comes prime recognition: your team name engraved onto the Trick or Eat cup.
Coming in second place was the International Student and Study Abroad Centre, whose members brought in 35 bags of food and $57. In third place came a group of kinesiology students, who garnered 27 bags of food as their contribution to the initiative. Taken together, the top three teams gathered a third of the total bags and brought in well over half of the monetary donations.
One member of the winning team, Sticky Sweet, was Josef Beug, a fourth-year mechanical engineering student. Beug shares his experience as a participant on the top team.
“It was a lot of fun! The event itself is a great way [to] experience Halloween, both because the event helps the community and [because] it is reminiscent of trick or treating as a kid. Most of the houses we stopped at were very friendly and generous with their donations, which also added to the experience,” Beug said, in an email to the Sheaf.
Beug’s team of six people were mainly veterans of the event, as half of them were on a team together last year. They had planned on participating in this year’s event after their last excursion, and Beug explains how this organization played a role in their success.
“The biggest impact was handing out fliers ahead of time. People generally want to donate food, but might not have anything ready to donate,” Beug said. “By handing out fliers for the event a day or two before, people can set some items aside or drop by the grocery store. Other than that, having access to a car is also helpful, simply to store and transport donations.”
The event is not only much easier to participate in with a team behind you but can also be, as Beug notes, a good social-activity option for Halloween.
“I personally decided to participate, because it’s something my friends and I can do together for Halloween. There are no limitations on what college you’re from, and dressing up is encouraged, but not expected,” Beug said.
Aside from the social aspects of Trick or Eat, there are some obvious benefits that participants bring to the community. All of the donations brought in through this event will be used to help out those in need in Saskatoon.
Beug explains why he thinks these kinds of charity events are important.
“I think that this event and initiatives like it benefit the community in two ways — the first being the food donations themselves, as they can go on to help those in need, and the second being the attention that these events bring to the needs of the community. By going door to door, residents can get an idea of what the Saskatoon community may need and what they can do to help.”
Jack Thompson / Sports & Health Editor
Photo: Sticky Sweet / Supplied