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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 29, 2023

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Students seek out opportunities to volunteer at home, abroad

The need to selflessly give to others drives many University students to volunteer – in Bowling Green and around the world.

For these volunteers, finding ways in which to help others came from their student organizations, a friend or a class.

Members of the University Activities Organization explained that they have set their sights on numerous ways to get more involved in the Bowling Green community.

UAO member Sarah Johnson said the new BG Teen Center is a great way for students to give back to Bowling Green teenagers.

The BG Teen Center, which is located in the Veteran’s Building in City Park, was the brainchild of the Institute for Child and Family Policy at the University and the United Way of Wood County.

“It is a place where BG teens can come and chill, because they didn’t have a place to do that before,” Johnson said.

Another volunteering venue for Johnson was brought to her through her position as a University Resident Adviser.

All first-year RAs must go through an RA class, part of which includes working on a community engagement project, explained Johnson.

Johnson will be going around with other RAs to community houses asking people if they would like their lawns raked for free.

For those not involved in campus organizations that volunteer, classes can prove to be an unusual way to get involved in different humanitarian causes.

Senior Tiggist Belete traveled to Mexico in March 2006 with her Spanish 395 class.

During her stay in Mexico, Belete volunteered with the organization Las Caritas, helping with the daycare operations and pharmacy.

Las Caritas is a charity that provides housing and assistance for ex-convicts, homeless people and senior citizens who can not get a job or do not have relatives to help care for them.

Belete said workers in the program view it as a rehabilitation program to help people get back on their feet, more than a hand-out operation.

“Being able to work with people who do this kind of work for a living is the best part of volunteering, because they care about the people involved, and they don’t treat it like charity,” Belete said.

Students can get involved in volunteering without being part of an organization or class too, said UAO member Elyse Anaszewicz.

“The Office of Campus Involvement is a great resource for people looking to get involved in volunteering,” Anaszewicz said.

The OCI is located on the fourth floor of the Union. “Just go in and ask what you can do to get involved,” she suggested.

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