The Florida Southern Volunteer Fair kicked off on Aug. 23 in the Honeyman Pavilion. Different organizations set up tables and invited student to discuss local volunteer opportunities.
For the past few years Rachel Smith, FSC’s former Volunteer In Service to America, planned the fair. This year, Brenda Lewis, the director of the Simmons Center for Multicultural Appreciation, who had helped with the program in the past, was in charge.
“Rachel Smith’s position as a VISTA ended in June, so she’s gone on to other things…since she’s not here anymore I’ve taken on some of her assignments until we get another VISTA,” Lewis said.
According to Lewis, the main goal of the fair is “to make our Florida Southern College campus community, students, faculty and staff, aware of the many volunteer opportunities in our community.”
Lewis said that many organizations from previous years returned.
“We always invite our community partners to come back every year because we get new students, and we want our first-year students to get an idea of what’s available to them in the community,” Lewis said.
A wide range of different organizations came to the fair. Sean Moiers represented Campfire USA. Moiers is an FSC alumnus who returned to campus on behalf of his organization. He said that he got involved with Campfire USA during his time at college, and that his organization regularly comes to the fair.
“We come every year as far as I know and get lots of people to sign up,” Moiers said.
Campfire USA was one of the many different organizations that provided a wide variety of opportunities for students to get involved.
“We have all kinds of things that need to be done,” Moiers said.
Other organizations were closer to home, such as Enactus, a student-led club on campus that does different social projects for the community.
“The real point of it is to make a real impact on people’s lives,” Lexi Gauslow, president of Enactus, said.
Although having a student-led organization at the fair is a little different, Alex Charwin, Enactus’s vice-president of recruitment, said that they were also there to get volunteers.
“We figured that the people who are willing to take time in the morning to come out and look for the organizations that can help the communityhat’s kind of the target audience, because those are the people who are willing to get out there and help us help other people,” Charwin said.
Students who came to the fair travelled to different tables and talked to the different organizations. When they were finished, students could get a star sticker. Once they had collected five stickers they could turn their cards in for a chance to win prizes.
Jessie Finocchiaro, a freshman math major, was one of the students who came to the fair to explore volunteer opportunities.
“I’m just looking for a way to get involved,” Finocchiaro said.
Lewis hopes that the fair will generate awareness of volunteer opportunities.
“We have so many agencies that need volunteers, so we just want to make sure that our campus community…[is] aware of what’s out there,” Lewis said.