Thirteen students and one staff member at The College at Brockport volunteered at the annual Thanksgiving Dinner at the Community Lutheran Ministry, Inc. in Rochester, NY on November 18th. “This was an eye opening experience for most of these student volunteers” said Coordinator of Service and Community Building, Nikole Van Wie. “This event gave students the opportunity to engage in meaningful conversation with community members. These interactions allowed them to gain another perspective and challenge their own assumptions about people that come from different backgrounds and socioeconomic groups.”
This event was an opportunity to bring together neighbors, living in a troubled community, and offer fellowship, good conversation and dinner. Volunteers helped peel potatoes, prepare desserts and salads, set tables, and serve the meals to the guests. The meal was served restaurant style, so they had the opportunity to interact with the guests. The volunteers were able to fill the bellies of 530 people, and even prepare plates for later.
This is not the first time that The College at Brockport has partnered with Community Lutheran Ministry, Inc. During our Fall Welcome Weekend, this organization is one of sixty-five other non-profit organizations/agencies that participate in the annual Saturday of Service program for incoming students. A follow-up engagement is also scheduled in January 2018 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.
Sarah Petrak is a student assistant with the Office of Communications and New Media for SUNY System Administration. She is a studying Public Policy at the University at Albany.