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The Empty Bowls Project

Empty Bowls

The concept of Empty Bowls began in 1990 when a Michigan art teacher wanted to come up with a way for his students to help out with the issue of hunger in our communities. Since then, the Empty Bowls Project has grown to be an international initiative. For information on the history of Empty Bowls or to learn how to start your own project, go to

Empty Bowls at Gleaners

Gleaners hosts the Empty Bowls Project by appointment only. A potter assists school age participants (ages 6 – 17) in making one clay bowl to take home for themselves* and one clay bowl to donate to the food bank to be used at an Empty Bowls fundraiser event to help feed our hungry neighbors. This fun filled day takes place at our Detroit Distribution Center. To participate in Empty Bowls, a $5 donation to cover the program costs for each participant, paid in advance is requested. 

Make an Appointment!

Empty Bowls sessions are held every Saturday from 9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. or 1 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Group Size: 10 – 16, which includes one adult chaperone for every 10 participants.

Contact the Empty Bowls coordinator at or call 866-GLEANER, ext 231, to schedule an appointment.

*Please note that clay bowls are fired and available for pick-up at a later date. Your group will be contacted when your bowls are ready.

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