Charitable Choices: Jill Mowser of Mary’s Meals

Mary’s Meals is a transformative global movement that extends its compassionate arms to some of the world’s most impoverished communities, where the harsh realities of poverty and hunger threaten the education and future of countless children. Their mission is brilliantly simple: by providing a single daily meal within a nurturing learning environment, Mary’s Meals not only nourishes young minds but also entices chronically underprivileged children into the classroom. We spoke to Jill Mowser, the Administrator, Donor Relations and Operations lead at Mary’s Meals, to learn more about what we can all do to aid in the global fight against poverty and hunger.

Mary's Meals

Describe your charity/non-profit/volunteer work in a few sentences.

Mary’s Meals is a global movement that sets up school feeding projects in some of the world’s poorest communities, where poverty and hunger prevent children from gaining an education. Our idea is a simple one that works. We provide one daily meal in a place of learning in order to attract chronically poor children into the classroom, where they receive an education that can, in the future, be their ladder out of poverty.

What problem does it aim to solve?

Our tagline is “A simple solution to world hunger” – specifically we focus on school feeding for children.

When did you start/join it?

I first heard about Mary’s Meals in 2010, started volunteering for them in 2012 and I’ve worked for them since 2016.

What made you want to get involved?

I love the vision and mission, the fact that Mary’s Meals is a low-cost charity, being excellent stewards of donations, and the simplicity of the work that we do, along with its effectiveness. I also have a deep respect for the founder of Mary’s Meals – Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow.

What was the situation like when you started?

When I first got involved with Mary’s Meals, they would have been feeding around 600,000 children every school day.

How has it changed since?

Today, we feed over 2.4 million children in 18 countries around the world. The global movement keeps growing; however, the need has also increased since the COVID-19 pandemic.

What more needs to be done?

We need to keep getting the word out so that more people can get involved in, and contribute to this work.

Mary's Meals

How can our readers help?

You can visit our website to learn more about what we do, and then share with others. You can come out to support our upcoming Basketball Bonanza event. If you can’t make it to the event, you can donate here. You can also consider becoming a monthly donor to our work, which helps us out immensely. It costs just $31.70 to feed a child for an entire school year.

Do you have any events coming up?

Yes, the above-mentioned 4th Annual Basketball Bonanza for Mary’s Meals, featuring a fun and competitive basketball game between Calgary Police and Calgary Fire on November 17th at 4:30 pm at Clear Water Academy.

Where can we follow you?

Website | Facebook | Instagram

PAY IT FORWARD: What is an awesome local charity that you love?

Calgary Pregnancy Care Centre.


About Emilea Semancik 81 Articles
Emilea Semancik was born in North Vancouver. Emilea has always always wanted to work as a freelance writer and currently writes for the Vancouver Guardian. Taking influence from journalism culture surrounding the great and late Anthony Bourdain, she is a recipe author working towards publishing her own series of books. You can find her food blog on Instagram: