Our Youth Advisory Council (YAC) students came together to collect household goods and nonperishable food items for three area nonprofits: Raytown Emergency Assistance Program (REAP), Community Services League (CSL), and Lee's Summit Social Services. YAC students and their adult chaperones stood outside four local Hy-Vee stores and asked patrons to help 'Fill Those Trucks' for local families in need. In those eight hours, they experienced a wide variety of people and responses. We have all heard the saying, 'You can't judge a book by its cover.' Even when the book's cover is in the form of a six-foot-tall man, draped in black leather and spikes, dawning a short mohawk dyed bright blue. You could hear him approaching as the chains on his jacket jangled as he walked. Sometimes it is hard to put on blinders and not make assumptions based solely on outward appearances. But without hesitation, a YAC student approached this intimidating figure with a genuine smile and a flyer in hand, 'We're having a food drive today. Please contribute if you can'. There was no reluctance. No judgment. Just a young person asking another human to help fight hunger in their community. Twenty minutes later, the man reappeared from the store, cart loaded with five or six bags full of food. He pulled a small sack from the child seat containing just an item or two and, with a smile and a quick nod, handed the cart off to the YAC student who had handed him the flyer. More than just a volunteer opportunity that helps fill local pantries, this annual food drive teaches our student leaders valuable life lessons. We want to thank the 54 YAC students and 31 caring adults who volunteered a combined 201 hours on that brisk (but dry) Saturday. Thanks to the organizational effort of the YAC students and the overwhelming generosity of our communities, the 'Fill Those Trucks' food drive fulfilled the goal of fighting local hunger. We can't do this work without the hard work and dedication of all our volunteers! Learn more about Youth Advisory Council and learn how you can get involved as a participant, supporter, or volunteer.