NASHVILLE — No child, no matter where they live, should have to face hunger and malnutrition. Unfortunately this is the tragic reality for millions of children around the world. In just two years, food insecurity has doubled to affect 276 million people. In 2021, 22% of children under age five experienced stunted development from malnutrition and 50 million people around the world are on the brink of starvation.
To address this crisis, the Nashville Predators Foundation empowered by SmileDirectClub, a charity organization devoted to funneling the excitement of professional sports toward the needs of the community, has partnered with Compassion International to kickstart Fill the Arena, an urgent effort to rally those in the Nashville area and beyond to feed children and their families — 17,159 children to be exact — the same number of seats in Bridgestone Arena. This effort will impact children in the Nashville area and around the world.
“Big changes often start with small things that move one person into action,” said Compassion CEO and President Santiago “Jimmy” Mellado. “Every seat in the Bridgestone Arena represents a child in need and every meal provided will give children a real chance to thrive. Every athlete and artist partnering with Fill the Arena is committed to answer the call to help vulnerable children around the world.”
Spearheaded by past and present Predators players including Mike Fisher, Ryan Johansen, and Roman Josi, as well as country music star Chase Rice and others, the Fill the Arena team is ready to do their part to address world hunger.
“We are facing a global hunger crisis,” said Fisher. “Fill the Arena is Nashville’s answer to the global food crisis, both across the globe and here in our own backyard. We are extremely passionate about filling every seat in this arena and are confident that people will step up and help us Fill the Arena!”
Compassion International previously teamed up with professional athletes from numerous sports to complete Fill the Stadium, an effort in direct response to food shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign raised over $36 million and provided life-saving food and support to 76,473 children around the world.
Founded in 1952, Compassion International is a Christian child development organization that works to release children from poverty in Jesus’ name.
CONTACT: Jeff Tolson, 610-584-1096 ext. 108, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com