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West High grad making sure students, families have the food they need

Rita Cordova helps fill food bags for the West High School Food Bank.
Posted at 7:47 AM, Jan 17, 2022

DENVER — Feeding hungry kids is a full-time job. That’s why volunteers at Denver’s West High School meet every Friday to gather, sort and pack food for the nearly 90 families who use the West Food Bank every week.

“We have oranges, beans, rice. We give them pasta,” said organizer Rita Cordova.

Cordova is the one who keeps the pieces moving. She is a West High alumnus and the food bank is something she and the Alumni Association helped launch back in 2018 to help families in the community considered “food insecure.”

“Food is important,” Cordova said. “And so many of our families can't afford as much food as we give them.”

Friend and fellow volunteer Irene Jordan said Cordova is the heart of the operation.

“She's got spirit, and she radiates that spirit to everybody else,” Jordan said. “She makes sure that there are orders that are in. She makes sure this volunteer is going to be coming, and picking up the food to make sure the other volunteers are here to fill the bags in the boxes.”

Cordova said West High community has always been a part of her life, and volunteering to help with something like the Food Bank helps her give back to those who mean so much to her.

“I've always been a volunteer at various places, but this has given me the most satisfaction because I feel like we're truly helping our kids and our parents to have sufficient food for the week," she said.

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