FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) -- Students at Purdue University Fort Wayne volunteered to fight food insecurity on campus, all while having a bit of fun playing Pokémon Go on Sunday. The Pantry at Purdue helps prevent hundreds of college students from going hungry every month.
Putting himself through college has been tough for William Meyer.
The Purdue University Fort Wayne student has struggled with family issues, financial aid, and joblessness.
Through it all, The Pantry at Purdue was there.
“It started off for me as a place to get food,” Meyer said.
Now, he’s a volunteer.
“It helps the students in need, financial needs. No matter where they're at financially,” he said.
The Pantry sees 300 to 400 guests a month.
Some days, crowds line up outside the door two hours ahead of opening.
Why’s there such a need?
“Traditionally, students work a lot of entry-level, low-paying jobs and COVID has hit those jobs hard,” PFW Student Camela Mount said.
She says more students struggle with food insecurity than we’d think.
“Food insecurity is anyone who does not have access to healthy food regularly,” Mount said.
The food drive is a part of Pokémon Go’s Community Day - a monthly event where game enthusiasts gather and play on campus.
“Most people come out here to catch, I come out here to talk," Jeff Newman said.
Newman has been obsessed with Pokémon Go since the summer of 2016.
He says people come in from as far away as Ohio and Michigan to play.
“On a normal Community Day where it’s nice and sunny around this time of year, we expect to be about 200 strong. But because of the rain earlier today, it pushed a lot of people to just driving around,” Newman said.
Still, students didn’t allow the weather to stop their fun or prevent them from volunteering for a good cause.