Just a few weeks ago in late September, over 150 Day of Service (DOS) volunteers from Hobart and William Smith Colleges excitedly headed out into the community to serve in a “green” way. Following the success of the environmental DOS, the Colleges continued their service with the second of three Days of Service on Saturday, Oct. 18 with a DOS focused on community well-being.
“Service themes like the environment and literacy are in the forefront of the minds of volunteers,” said 2008 DOS Co-Chair Jillian Petrella ’09. “On the other hand, we might forget that the elderly can be alone, and it might be nice for some people to visit and just socialize with them. Or a church needs help cleaning because there’s a lot to do and the few people who work there can’t possibly do it all. Community well-being really focuses on the smaller, less glamorous projects that are still very important and very helpful for people.”
The sites available for the day included visiting with the elderly at Clifton Springs Hospital, indoor and outdoor cleaning at Trinity Church, a trip to the Ontario Pathways, and much more. At the Pathways in September, volunteers helped clean the trail but now carved pumpkins in the organization’s large jack-o-lantern fundraiser in which participants line the trail with jack-o-lanterns.
“The three ‘pillars’ of service: environment, community well-being and youth and literacy were based on the idea that volunteers get more out of the work they do when they are doing something they care about,” explained Petrella. “We put that idea into action by turning the three pillars into three different Days of Service.”
Sponsored by the President’s Office, Student Affairs, the William Smith Dean’s Office, Hobart Student Government, William Smith Congress and advised by Associate Director of the Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning (CCESL) Katie Flowers, the Days of Service program is an important step to further connect people to community service opportunities, the first step in CCESL’s “COMPASS” strategy.
“Days of Service is about bringing the Colleges and the community together and based on the feedback we got, that really happened on the first Day in September,” said Petrella. “We hope that everyone is as excited and subsequently satisfied with this day of service.”
You can register online at: http://campus.hws.edu/stu/publicservice/dos/dosreg.asp
You can also register for the Sunday, Nov. 2 DOS focused on youth and literacy.