While casually flipping through the many holiday themed evites in your inbox, you were quite moved by the brilliance of one in particular: a private party where no presents were desired — simply a donation of a warm coat or canned good to a campus charity. And with it being a new year and all, you think it might be time you followed their example and did a little good yourself.
So often we get caught up in our own day-to-day business that we rarely schedule time to donate or volunteer. There are so many ways to make a difference while enjoying yourself — unlike the dated candy striper duty of our parent’s generation.
Here are a few of our personal campus faves:
Big Brothers/Big Sisters. Sick of the college-aged folk? Create a lasting relationship with a youngster who could use a positive role model.
Senior prom. The above also applies here but with a different twist. Never learned to waltz? Chances are there are many members of your community who’d love to show off their killer dance moves if only youd organize an event. Check out the local retirement homes and bring some cheer to an elderly person’s day.
Humane society. Miss your parent’s pooch? Spend time finding homes for your local four legged friends who have fallen upon hard times.
Bilingual community centers. Practice that foreign language and learn about different cultures while helping immigrants learn English. You’ll learn about their rights in this country and help them find housing and jobs.
Dance-a-thon. Who doesn’t love to dance? Line up some pledges, pump hot tunes and in no time you can draw a crowd.
Local parks. Get some fresh air while keeping your community’s flora and fauna healthy, clean and fresh.
Soup kitchen. You may have endless points at the dinning hall but there are people out there with empty bellies. Talk to your local homeless shelter about volunteer options and food parties.
Politics. Did we all hear about Hilary last week? Get involved; be part of history.
So go on and visit your campus center for service. And if nothing catches your eye there, remember how endless that pool of campus resources is for you. Get friends together, get the altruistic juices flowing and start your own charity. You’ll create traditions and spice up that resume all while doing some good.