Lower School Students Help Fight Food Insecurity with Empty Bowls Project


Ross School parents and students gathered before winter break to participate in the Empty Bowls Project, an international, grassroots, crafts-based initiative to fight hunger and raise awareness of poverty. Participants create handmade bowls, then supporters are invited to a simple lunch during which they may purchase bowls. The proceeds from the sale of the bowls are donated to local food charities.

Ross’s participation in Empty Bowls coincides with our students’ study of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The project offers an opportunity for action in the tradition of one of Dr. King’s quotes: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

Beginning in December, the campuswide effort has been led Chris Engel, prominent artist and Ross School director of community programs. In preparation for the project, he invited Bridgehampton-based ceramicist Mary Jaffe to campus to share her expertise with students. She helped Lower School students to craft and glaze clay bowls, which were later fired in the school kiln. At a later event, parents joined their children in a clay bowl–making workshop.

The bowls will be on display and available for sale during the assembly honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday, January 15. Funds raised will be forwarded to local food banks.