Day of Giving

By: Christina Sinclair

I have always wanted to help others, but I questioned why I should volunteer my time; and, as a college student, I wondered how I could possibly help others in need. However, with Thanksgiving approaching, I started thinking about the many people that won’t be able to have a Thanksgiving dinner; and then, I decided to go the Center for Community Engagement (CCE) to see what volunteer programs they had. The one that stood out to me the most was the Day of Giving Food Drive, so I signed up, and within a day I had an email with the day and time I was volunteering. I was so excited!

On the day of the food drive, we went to the Willimantic Co-op and asked people to donate money and/or food for the Covenant Soup Kitchen. We set up by getting carts and boxes to put the donations in, making signs to hold up, and making flyers to hand out to the customers that walked by. We talked to the customers before they went in to the store, and they were more likely to bring out a canned good or box of food to us for donation than those that ignored us. Almost everyone tried to donate at least one food product, and, in fact, most people donated more than one item! When the day was finished, we had money that was donated, as well as a cart and a huge box filled with food products!

Not only was I able to help people in need, but I also got to talk to people from the Willimantic community. Most people would stop to talk to us, and would listen when we told them about the fire truck that goes around town to alert people when it is time for lunch or dinner, and then we told them how helpful their donations would be. They would tell us that we were doing a good deed, and then would express interest in signing up to volunteer at the Covenant Soup Kitchen. Before this event, I used to think that people did not care about others and just did what was best for them, but everyone in Willimantic showed caring for one another. It made me realize that there are good-hearted people who want the best for their community and the people that live in it.

I recommend that people volunteer for the Day of Giving and any other programs that the CCE has to offer, because it makes you feel better about yourself and helps hundreds of people in need. The food that is donated from the Day of Giving food drives helps people from the Windham community. UntitledIt is cooked and served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to the people in the community that are in need of a good meal.

To look at photos of this event, check out our Flickr account! Day of Giving