CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Two Xavier student athletes are working to make sure that people in need can always find a meal, and it’s already making a difference.
They organized a fundraiser for Freestore Foodbank by opening a Go Fund Me page that raised more than $7,000 in just hours, surpassing a $5,000 goal.
Now that goal has been doubled to $10,000.
“We’ve just been blown away all day. It’s been insane," said Riece Drew, a swimmer who is in his first year at Xavier.
Jason Carter, a basketball player, said he was just thinking of a way to give back.
He contacted the university’s compliance office to brainstorm an idea to help.
“That’s where I found out Riece was having a similar idea," Carter said.
“And so Jason and I giggled and were like, ‘why don’t we just do this together?’” Drew said.
“Jason and I were talking about just how gracious we are to have somewhere that provide food for children and families in need in Cincinnati. Not only in times of struggle right now, but all the time so we need to give back to a community that has given us so much.”
They started a GoFundMe page called “Xavier’s SA campaign for Freestore-Foodbank.”
“My teammates and the other student-athletes at Xavier wanted to find a way to help some of the people in need during these difficult times,” the page reads.
“I have been working with Xavier’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, also known as SAAC, to start a Go Fund Me fundraiser to raise money for Cincinnati’s Freestore-Foodbank. Please join me in support of their great work .
"More information about Freestore-Foodbank, Inc.: Freestore Foodbank’s mission is to improve lives by eliminating hunger in partnership with our community. Our vision is a hunger-free, healthy, and thriving community. To achieve this vision, our objectives are to provide nutritious food, connect families to supportive services and ensure hope through pathways from crisis to stability.”
Carter tweeted about it around noon - and the donations started pouring in.
“I set my phone aside for a few hours and I checked it and I saw that Jason had texted me and I was like, ‘I thought we had everything in order, I don’t know what’s happening,’" Drew recalled, "and Jason was like, ‘did you just check that out?!’”
More than 50 donors have given money so far, raising $7,674 as of Tuesday morning.
The biggest donors is First Star Logistics, which gave $5,000, according to the Go Fund Me Page.
Other donors range from $200 to $20.
“Even in this time, people may be losing jobs or reduced pay and if those people are willing to help, too, it’s a great feeling," Carter said.
“It is incredible to see that we have people supporting us all over the city, the states, all of our hometowns. It’s crazy," Drew said.