Fair serves up opportunities to volunteer
The Office of Community Engagement will host the 2012 Service Fair from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sept. 12 in Ledbetter Hall.
Taking time to volunteer may seem daunting for students with busy schedules, but there are many benefits.
According to UALR’s website, the OCE was established “to facilitate the building of partnerships between UALR faculty, staff, students and the community in ways that will be mutually beneficial.”
Susan Ellis of energizeinc.com said, “Instead of considering volunteering as something you do for people who are not as fortunate as yourself, begin to think of it as an exchange.”
Ellis tells readers to consider that one day they may be in need of someone else’s volunteer efforts.
Although it takes commitment, time, energy and dedication to volunteer, it also presents students with opportunities to demonstrate their passions, broaden their professional network and add experience to a resume.
Students can prepare for the fair by considering available time commitments and the issues that are important to them.
Volunteer activities can vary in time commitment anywhere from a couple of hours to years.
“Students should bring themselves and an open mind,” said Betsey Hart, community relations coordinator. “They should be prepared to converse with the organizations.”
If students are unsure how to choose the best project for their schedule, assistance will be available through OCE during the fair.
The Service Fair will have over 40 nonprofit organizations for students to explore including:
Easter Seals of Arkansas
March of Dimes
Bishop Leodis and Goldie Warren CDC
World Services for the Blind
American Lung Association
Arkansas Food Bank
Arkansas Children’s Hospital
Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Central Arkansas
Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance
Youth Home, Incorporated
Pulaski County Youth Services
Junior Achievement of Arkansas
Arkansas Literacy Councils
Nonprofit organizations respect the student body of UALR because they are stepping up and volunteering, said Hart.
“Many organizations return year after year to present opportunities for more students to have a part in volunteering for their organizations,” Hart said.
Questionnaires from previous volunteer organizations have shown positive feedback. The majority of vendors said UALR students responded well to volunteer opportunities and made the experience enjoyable.
“I think the fair was great,” a Girl Scouts representative wrote. “I really enjoyed speaking with students and talking with them about all the fun ways they can volunteer and get involved [in] the local community.”
An advocate of Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Central Arkansas agreed, “As always we had a great response from the service fair [last] year.”
For a full list of attending organizations visit ualr.edu/CommunityEngagement.
Although it is not required, business casual dress is appropriate.
For more information, contact Hart at 501-569-3424 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.