Fall is upon us, Thanksgiving is almost here, and that means it’s time for our annual Thanksgiving food drive! And like last year, this year we’ll be engaging in friendly competition with other area Jesuit high schools in The Great Ignatian Challenge!

From October 22 through November 19, students from Prep, Xavier High School, Loyola School, Regis High School, Fordham Prep, and Fairfield Prep will compete to raise the most food donations for a food bank of their choice. This year, Prep is collecting donations for St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church and St. Patrick & Assumption/All Saints Parish, both in Jersey City.

Our minimum goal is 3,525 pounds of food (which works out to about five food items per student!), but because of how generous Prep students have been in the past, we are setting our initial total goal at 12,000 pounds. To reach (and hopefully exceed) this goal, we will need the help of the entire Prep community: students, families, faculty, staff, administration, and alumni!

This year, we will collect donations online through our YouGiveGoods Great Ignatian Challenge page, and on-campus in the Office of Campus Ministry. The wishlists for both of our partners are there, so you’ll be able to buy and donate things that they really need. YouGiveGoods will deliver most of the donations directly to the organizations, but there will be opportunities for students and families to help sort, package, and deliver in-person donations.

In an effort to make this an event about school unity, we will not be incorporating a homeroom competition into this year’s drive. Instead, we will offer prizes for the entire school community if and when we hit certain benchmarks. But in order to reach our goals, and exceed them, we need everyone to get involved! Let’s make this an effort by the entire Prep community, and make Thanksgiving special for a lot of hungry people in the North Jersey area.