The holiday season is a great time of year to express our kindness throughout New York. SUNY students, faculty, and staff in every region of New York are continuously making a difference in their communities with services that range from helping at regional food banks, collecting toys for children in need, to organizing food drives and other charitable events. So, as you and your families enjoy the holiday season, know that SUNY students from across the state have worked to improve their communities, the state, our nation, and the world.
This year, we saw the Genesee Community College club, “RAKtivists” – Random Acts of Kindness, and a group of three students working together to raise $500 for the Title III Challenge Grant Scholarship. The RAKtivists also raised $288 for the Genesee and Orleans County animal shelters, with the College community also donating approximately 175 pounds of dog and cat food.
Members of the SUNY Oswego community helped spread holiday cheer to families in need across Oswego County through the college’s 27th annual Toy Drive. The effort, in conjunction with Oswego County’s Department of Social Services, seeks to make sure each child in the county has a gift to open during the holiday season. The drive typically garners 500 to 600 gifts and donations that are used to purchase dozens more.
Students in FIT’s Visual Presentation and Exhibition Design (VPED) program made an indelible impression with their design for the college’s second annual holiday pop-up shop – and all for a good cause. Seasons Greet-Inks, open to the public, is stocked with high-end designer and vintage clothing, accessories, and gift items from The Society Boutique, The Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s (MSK) thrift shop. Even better, all proceeds benefit the boutique, which supports The Society of MSK’s important patient care, education, and research programs at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Sales from last year’s shop raised $35,000.
In 2013, Stony Brook students formed a chapter of the nonprofit organization Camp Kesem, one of 63 chapters in the nation, and the inaugural camp took place this past summer. Camp Kesem is a free week-long summer camp for children whose parents have cancer. But its impact extends beyond that one week. Campers stay connected through social media and reunions so that camp never truly ends. It’s also a yearlong fundraising initiative led by the students at Stony Brook University who commit themselves to raising the money, both by applying for grants and hosting events, and by pledging to raise $500 individually toward bringing one child and themselves to camp.
The compassionate hearts of SUNY students from across the state has fostered the success of the 30 Days of Giving’ campaign. While this sampling of engagement projects shows a depth, breadth, and diversity of outreach efforts, it cannot capture all the stories of the people affected by the kindness of SUNY’s students, faculty and staff. Happy Holidays from the SUNY family.
See photos from all of the submissions given to this year’s 30 Days of Giving campaign in the video below: