“In 1990 a high school art teacher in Michigan helped his students solve a problem. They were searching for a way to raise funds to support a food drive. What evolved was a class project to make ceramic bowls for a fundraising meal. Guests were served a simple meal of soup and bread, and were invited to keep the bowl as a reminder of hunger in the world. By the following year the originators had developed this concept into Empty Bowls, a project to provide support for food banks, soup kitchens, and other organizations that fight hunger. Since then Empty Bowls events have been held throughout the world, and millions of dollars have been raised to combat hunger.”- tempepemptybowls.org

Tempe Empty Bowls has been actively benefiting the Tempe community for over 18 years, working with Tempe Community Action Agency and United Food Bank, and collectively providing enough money for 1.2 million meals for the hungry. For the last 3 years, we have partnered with Tempe Empty Bowls to help with their mission of providing food for hungry children, families, and seniors in Tempe. Our wonderful community of customers come together over a weekend in January and paint bowls to be donated to the organization. Tempe Empty Bowls then sells the customer creations, alongside the bowls from potters and students in the valley, at their annual fundraising event. Collectively, our As You Wish community has donated over 700 bowls!

This year, Lori and Scott volunteered at Tempe Empty Bowls’ event- helping set up tables with bowls for purchase and assisting community members who came out to show their support by purchasing a bowl or two! Here is what Lori had to say about their experience:

“Helping set up for the event and get it started was such an amazing experience.  We loved getting to know the other volunteers that were passionate about this cause; some have been helping Tempe Empty Bowls for over 15 years! As the event began, it was incredible to see the number of people that came to support the efforts of Tempe Empty Bowls and providing meals for the hungry.  People bought not one, not two, but several bowls! We even ran into some of our As You Wish customers that painted bowls in January and came to the event in hopes to find the bowl they painted. A few of them did find their bowl, and they were so excited to buy back the bowls they painted & contribute to the cause! With the donations of handcrafted bowls, time, and effort spent to support the needs of the community, it brought a smile to my face to see the power of community coming together.”

Thank you to Tempe Empty Bowls for partnering with us these past few years, and we look forward to continuing the tradition of Painting it Forward together!