Kathleen Burks '19 | University of Portland

Kathleen Burks '19

No Kid Hungry Youth Ambassador at North Clackamas School District

Kathleen Burks“This summer, I am working as a No Kid Hungry youth ambassador in the North Clackamas School District for the Summer Food Service Program. The Summer Food Service Program is a federal program which provides free meals to kids and teens ages 1-18. At this internship, I have been working to improve the program and increase access to it by doing things like coordinating the activities and instructional materials for the meal sites in the North Clackamas area, planning fun and educational programming and events for the sites to increase participation, canvassing the local area with promotional materials, and partnering with local organizations and groups to help spread the word. 

I have learned so many different things, from how to write a press release to how to create surveys to learning the challenges behind doing community outreach. I also survey the families about the program, design informational materials to distribute, and work at the meal-sites. My favorite moments have been interacting with the kids. Getting the chance to provide a fun environment that kids will want to come back to is wonderful because having engaging activities and games that kids want to do makes them come back time and time again for a free, hot meal. 

Internships are important because they give you the opportunity to figure out what you like and help you find what you're truly passionate about. Having an internship will give you the experience necessary to decide what path you want to take in life. I applied for this internship because I wanted to find an opportunity where I could make a positive impact in my community. Working to solve childhood hunger at the grassroots level is incredibly important work and I wanted to be a part of it.”