ELMIRA, N.Y.(WENY)-- Tuesday afternoon, Catholic Charities of Chemung and Schuyler County hosted their 14th annual Empty bowls luncheon. The foundation originally started with a goal of $20,000, but the Executive Director of Development with Catholic Charities told WENY News they have reached over $23,000. The director also told WENY that they only expected roughly 250 people to come today and they actually had a turn out of closer to 350. 

The luncheon is to not only help raise money for their emergency services, but it is also to remind everyone who attended that there is someone every day going without something to eat. 

"This event is meant to raise money for our Samaritan center, it's the largest fund raiser that we do. It's a hunger and poverty awareness event, so we have real people come, they share their stories of over coming poverty, drug abuse, hunger, all of the things that our clients face. And the community learns a lot," say Lindsay Baker, Executive Director of Development for Catholic Charities of Chemung and Schuyler County. 

The purpose of buying some of those bowls today was not only to be able to eat your lunch out of it, but to remind you at home that people are going every day without any food.

"The bowl itself is symbolic, you get to take it home as a reminder that people go with out all across the united states, so it's just to bring awareness to the fact that people are going without," says Baker. 

ELMIRA College has hosted the Empty Bowels Luncheon over the past few years. E-C President Charles Lindsey says the college is happy to not only provide the location for the event, but also have his students and staff provide some of the bowls.

"It's a really cool aspect that the bowls are produced here and it's not only the students but our faculty participated in that as well. So you've got some really professional bowls that are done. They look absolutely beautiful and as I said, they didn't ask me to do one and I think I know why," says Charles Lindsey, President of Elmira College. 

The luncheon was one day only but Catholic Charities is always accepting donations. To learn more about Catholic Charities and the services they supply, you can click here.