Volume 7, Number 1, 1997

Volunteer opportunities bring out the best

Volunteer activities abound on the UD campus with opportunities for students to get involved with everything-from animals to babies to senior citizens.

Coordinated by Jane B. Moore, assistant dean of students, the Community Service Program offers incoming students a myriad of ways to be active by volunteering.

"We hope to present students with worthwhile things to do as they get to know each other and the community," Moore said. "Volunteerism is a great way to work and play together while making a contribution.

"With more high schools focusing on volunteer work, we know many of our incoming students already have been volunteers and we hope they will want to continue."

This year, every incoming student received a letter listing 25 local organizations looking for volunteers. Included were short-term commitments, such as handing out fliers at Newark Community Day for Citizens Against Traffic (CAT) or working at a race to benefit Habitat for Humanity, and there were long-term commitments as well, such as mentoring a child through Big Brothers/Big Sisters or befriending a disabled person through ARC (Association for the Rights of Citizens) of Delaware. Students were encouraged to choose an opportunity they would like to explore alone or with a group of friends for personal satisfaction or career development.

Additionally, at the end of September, each residence hall government was asked to select a community agency to support. Greek organizations also have been asked to expand their role in volunteerism.

"Our Community Service Program offers students the opportunity to give a portion of their time to helping others," Moore said "Opportunities include working with people of all ages and in situations involving the environment, family, the arts, health, animals, hunger, education, disabilities and social justice."

In September, a volunteer fair, called The Service Learning Connection, was held in the Trabant University Center, with representatives from more than 40 local nonprofit organizations.

Oct. 25 was national Make a Difference Day, and the Senior Class officers sponsored a University-wide volunteer effort to clean up historic Fort DuPont. Several other campus groups also completed community service projects that day.

-Beth Thomas