By Teresa Crasto
If you haven’t heard of the Kenney Center before, you probably aren’t the only one. The Kenney Center, located at the corner of Park Place and Nott Street, is the headquarters of community service at Union College. They run various programs that allow Union students to volunteer in different capacities in the local neighborhood, including America Reads, the STEP Program and Habitat for Humanity.
Yet there are countless other groups on campus who also find ways to give back. From the different sports teams, fraternities and sororities, and other clubs on campus, there are many other groups that provide opportunities for community service. With all these opportunities, one would think that something existed to unite them all.
But there isn’t. There is no group on campus that unites the volunteer efforts of all groups. Therefore, my idea is that the Kenney Center or another organization on campus designs a program that would allow all groups on campus to coordinate their volunteer efforts. If a group was planning a community service activity, they would notify someone in the program who would keep a record of the volunteer efforts.
There are many benefits to a system like this. First, it would a way for different groups to widen their pool of potential volunteers. For example, if a fraternity was planning a bowling outing for children in the community, they could use the program in order to find other volunteers who would willing to help with the planning and organizing of the activity.
In addition, the program could have a calendar that listed the different service activities for each day, allowing those on campus a quick and an easy way to find volunteer opportunities. If there was one location where all community service events were listed, students would be more motivated to volunteer, for it would be more accessible.
Volunteering is about giving back to the community, to those who aren’t as lucky as we are. Uniting the volunteer efforts on campus can only increase the positive impact we have on those around us.