Nonprofit partners with art school to raise awareness of child hunger

SARASOTA — The little juice box shaped like a calculator had run out of, well, juice. It sat, slumped and sad, as other plump juicebox-calculators launched into the air like rockets. Suddenly, an orange enters the picture to refuel our hungry hero. Sated, the juice box jumps into a child’s backpack to continue its mission of nourishing young minds.

The 30-second commercial was one of 12 presented to All Faiths Food Bank on Monday, capping off a five-week collaboration with Ringling College of Art and Design.

It’s the second year in a row that the school and the nonprofit team up to raise awareness about child hunger. This year’s theme revolved around the role of nutritious food in a child’s academic success.

“It's difficult to convince people that there really is a problem with childhood hunger here and that it does impact academic success," said All Faiths CEO Sandra Frank, commending the students for fitting the message into 30-second clips.

CEO of All Faith's Food Bank, Sandra Frank, thanks the motion design student for the hard work they put into their Junior Collaboration Projects Monday, Nov. 28 at Ringling College of Art + Design.

CEO of All Faith's Food Bank, Sandra Frank, thanks the motion design student for the hard work they put into their Junior Collaboration Projects Monday, Nov. 28 at Ringling College of Art + Design.

The student-created PSAs will be shared with other food banks across the country. Last year's projects are still playing in cities nationwide and several picked up advertising awards.

The collaboration is a huge help for food banks, said Laura Coyle, All Faiths' director of creative services, since most don't have the money to invest in professional-grade advertising campaigns.

But the projects are also a huge boost for the students, said Ed Cheetham, head of Ringling’s motion design department.

“Part of our goal is not only to develop technically adept students but also socially responsible students,” Cheetham said. Now the projects function as his third-year students' final exam of sorts.

For David Reyes and Hannah Segraves, the students behind the juice box commercial, the experience was enriching but nerve-wracking.

They're used to presenting in front of professors, not real clients.

"It was precious because they only come in once or twice versus teachers who are available for feedback all the time," Reyes said.