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MC hosts volunteer fair

September 20, 2013

Community organizations in Monmouth looking for volunteers were able to meet with students during the annual volunteer fair. On Wednesday, Sept. 18, the volunteer fair was held in the basement of Stockdale where a dozen different organizations had display tables asking for college student volunteers to give a little back to their new community.

Billy Bernard, the Director of Student Involvement, organized the fair and was very pleased with the turnout from community organizations and students. Attending organizations were the Faith Presbyterian Church, United Way, Strom Center, Operation Christmas Child, Rainbow Riders, First Street Armoury, OSF Hospice, Boys Scouts of America, Kids Against Hunger, Hospice Compassus and the Regional Office of Education District 27. Carl Sandberg College Literacy Coalition was unable to attend but more information about their group will be provided soon upon request.

Bernard brought this fair to students to try to improve involvement in a different, rewarding way. He first got involved with volunteer work when he was in college and immensely enjoyed and benefitted from his experiences. He is now an advocate for these needy organizations. According to Bernard, volunteering should enhance one’s knowledge about the community they are living in and give people an opportunity to give back to those who give so much and are partners with the school.

First Street Armoury was represented by Christen Allen at the fair. According to Allen, the Armoury is a community action center that works with the children in the Monmouth community in an attempt to build up family life. They run both the men and women’s homeless shelters in the area where residents work and give back to the community.
Hospice Compassus is a hospice program taking volunteers for patient or office work. Volunteers are trained, interviewed, fingerprinted and receive a background check. Their representative, Tia Taylor, is adamant that no volunteer is put in an uncomfortable position with any patient. Many volunteers simply serve as companions or helpers to a patient.

United Way is also an involvement group where all proceeds are donated to dozens of local establishments. They also work with campus on many events.

Students who were unable to attend the fair but are interested in volunteering should contact Billy Bernard in the Office of Student Involvement.

Claire Griffith
Contributing Writer

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