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ATSU-SOMA students team up to help alleviate hunger in local communities

ATSU-SOMA second- and third-year students with some of the packed sack lunches.

Several A.T. Still University-School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (ATSU-SOMA) students at San Ysidro Health, a federally qualified health center in San Diego, California, are giving back to their local community through service. 

Members of The Student Homeless Aid Relief Project (SHARP) and Sigma Sigma Phi, an honorary osteopathic service fraternity, teamed up in April to assemble 300 sack lunches for the local homeless community.

Student assembly line of sandwiches.
ATSU-SOMA students prepare sandwiches for the sack lunches.

“My mission for SHARP is to help the local homeless population by alleviating hunger, and offering emotional support by personally distributing the sack lunches outdoors,” said Sam Adllirad, OMS IV, an ATSU-SOMA student and president of SHARP.

With funding provided by San Ysidro Health, the second- and third-year students were able to purchase paper plates, bread, peanut butter, jelly, plastic ziplock baggies, utensils, brown baggies, water, masks, and snacks to assemble each lunch. 

Not only did the students dedicate their time packing the lunches, six students also personally distributed them in downtown San Diego, in an area with a high concentration of homeless individuals. 

“As a future physician, I look forward to not only practicing in medically underserved areas, but to also find other ways to help strengthen the community through events like these,” Adllirad said.

Students pose outside with boxes of lunches.
(Standing left to right) Sam Adllirad, OMS IV, Lauren D’Annibale, OMS IV, Erika Hollywood, OMS IV, and Charlotte Abiezzi, OMS III. 

(Kneeling left to right) Taylor Willis, OMS III, Leah Grinshpun, OMS III.

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