Quote of the Month...

If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one. ~ Mother Teresa

Monday, December 5, 2011

Non-Profit Indy: Big Brother, Big Sisters of Central Indiana

“I’d definitely recommend BBBSCI to others. I hope that I have made and can continue to make a positive impact on his life. And he has made a positive impact on my life as well- it’s been a very rewarding experience, and one that I’ll always remember.”

-Big Brother and former IUPUI student, Jim Wisco

Building snowmen.
Shooting hoops.
Playing playstation.

These are types of things that most kids like to do. But that’s why Big Brother (and former IUPUI student) Jim Wisco and his Little Brother Jordan work so well together—Jim likes to do those things too. They can both do “normal” things that they both enjoy doing—but now they do them together.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana (BBBSCI) currently has around 800 mentors in Central Indiana who make a huge difference every day, but the need is great. BBBSCI currently has about 40 Little Brothers and Littles Sisters around Central Indiana waiting for a mentor with over 400 in the application process.

Bigs are needed, especially Big Brothers and Big Couples. Through the program, volunteers are coached with the help of "Match Support Specialists" who are fully trained, full-time staff who give advice, help, activity suggestions and coupons to their matches. They also work with each match to emphasize:
-higher aspirations, greater confidence and better relationships
-educational success
-avoidance of risky behavior

According to an Harris Interactive study, 90% of former Littles stated their Big made them feel better about themselves, 81% said their Big changed their perspective on what they thought was possible in life and 46% now have a household income of $75,000 or more.

Jim has been matched with his Little Brother Jordan since 2006. Wisco said “Overall I just remember the first time I met him and he was a shy little kid. Now he's not little and he's not shy; he's become a great young man. He has become more confident and outgoing over the past couple years. I think that is due to several factors, not the least of which the great support he has from his family, but I hope I have helped some too.”

Bigs meet with their Little for roughly 4-6 hours a month, for a minimum of 12 months. Using a “design your own schedule” approach, Bigs are able to adjust their schedule and change their schedule as they go, meeting their Little in the evenings, over the weekends and even during lunch and partner schools. Wisco also stated, "Time management has been, and still is, a constant challenge. But, I've just tried to do the best I can. Even when I've had too much on my plate, it's been important to me to stick with him- he's a great young man.”

Nothing beats a smile on a child's face. And Wisco hopes more of the IUPUI staff/faculty and students get involved. Wisco said, “I'd definitely recommend BBBSCI to others. It's been a pleasure getting to know him and his family, and we've done so many fun things together that I've enjoyed just as much as him. I hope that I have made and can continue to make a positive impact on his life. And he has made a positive impact on my life as well-it's been a very rewarding experience, and one that I'll always remember.”

To find out more about how you can make an impact in and around the IUPUI campus and through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana.
Contact: Laura Halt, Director of Volunteer Engagement
Phone: (317) 472-3730
Visit their website at www.bebigforkids.org

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

World AIDS Day

This Thursday on IUPUI campus an informative fair in the Campus Center will help raise awareness of the various people afflicted by HIV/AIDS.  This global issue affects people from all backgrounds, beliefs, races and regions of the world.  It is not limited to one crowd or one country.

 The U.S. Center for Disease Control shares information on what populations are most significantly affected by HIV/AIDS in the United States and what can be done to prevent the spread of them.

To understand issues around the globe you can do your own research or follow this link: HIV/AIDS Report.

 U.S. National Overview
  • Nearly 1.2 million people are living with HIV in the U.S. (an estimated 1,178,350 adults and adolescents), and one in five of those (20 percent) are unaware of their infections.
  • Despite increases in the total number of people living with HIV in the U.S. in recent years, the annual number of new infections has remained relatively stable overall.
  • However, HIV infections continue at far too high a level, with approximately 50,000 Americans becoming newly infected with HIV each year.
  • More than 16,000 people with AIDS still die each year in the U.S.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Free Rice for Thanksgiving

It's addicting. Any game is.
Not only that, it feeds people.

Test your knowledge in languages, geography, math, literature or sciences, and feed people while you do it.

Free Rice is a wonderful way to raise money for those going hungry.

Visit the link over the Thanksgiving holiday and feed children around the world.

Who Gets Free Rice?
Feed a dream

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Who is Hungry? Who is Homeless?

Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week
November 14-19

Monday the H&H banner was signed to kick-off the events of this week.

Many faces hid under a bridge.

The issue they face not set in the light.

They are a faceless stereotype

A definition hard to package

Who will be the willing to face the issue?

“Hunger” and “homeless” will be defined.

The facts shared may blow the mind,

But face them they are true.

Look at the following events for the week.  How can you help? 

Monday, November 7, 2011

Non-Profit Indy: Girls Inc.

This week we're taking a closer look at a non-profit in the Indianapolis area. 

 Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis provides hands-on programs that address the challenges girls face today, like self-esteem and bullying. They want all girls to be healthy, educated and independent. Volunteers work with girls who range from 6 years old to fourteen years old once a week for 6 weeks throughout the school year.

  Strong. Smart. Bold.

To learn more and apply to be a volunteer please visit www.girlsincindy.org
or call Mollie Hicks at 317-522-2610.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Fall Alternative Break: Boone, North Carolina

     What made the Fall Alternative Break trip worth while?

     Maybe it was the beauty of the Autumn leaves on Rough Ridge Parkway, or perhaps the cool air of the Great Smoky Mountains, it may have even been the peanut butter and bologna sandwiches, but more than likely it was a combination of the entire experience that makes FAB Coordinators Jill Conley and Taylor Pennell look forward to planning future alternative break trips. 
The Viaduct View from the Rough Ridge Parkway
       This year FAB spent the weekend of fall break in Boone, North Carolina.  Rough Ridge Parkway is just a part of the Mountain-to-Sea trail on which the volunteers worked for three days. Armed with clippers and pruning shears they were commissioned to clear a small portion of the 1,000 mile trail that winds it's way from the mountains of North Carolina to the Outer Banks.       
      "Leading FAB taught us all the details about how to plan an Alternative Break, but it was completely worth it when we saw how well the group worked together to achieve the goals we had set from the beginning," Conely and Pennell said.  "It gave us confidence to have a successful upcoming Spring Break."
Jared Wilson, the fearless mentor for the FAB Coordinators
            "We were all quiet on the way there," Fernanda Agnes said about the nine hour trip through the hills of Kentucky and Tennesse. But she said it didn't take long for the team to warm up to each other as they heated water over the campfire for mochas. 
Fernanda, Kim and Julia
       When the team wasn't working on the trail, they were eating their meals in picturesque places or layering on clothes to protect themselves from the surprisingly chilly evening temperatures.
The FAB group relaxing on the rocks.
      The menu of the weekend took a surprising twist when people decided to invent new food combinations. Everything from bologna and peanut butter sandwiches to banana s'mores were created. Apparently, they were good too.  
       Apart from fun food experiments, Conley and Pennell agreed that enjoying the mountain scenery was the most memorable.
     "The best moment was when we worked hard on the last day, and when we finished we hiked up to the top of Rough Ridge and were blown away by a breath taking view of the Autumn trees."
     The group was glad to hear that their efforts could be a jump-start for the small town economies within the area, as tourists would begin to use the trail more often.  Residents of the area were grateful, and the students were happy to be of service.

      Conley and Pennell both are looking forward to the Spring Alternative Break trips, and they agree that it is a "great break from the busy life of a college student."
Back Row: Fernanda, Kim, Taylor, Jillian, Jarod, Chad
Front Row: Kailey, Julia, Kayla, Jose, Xiaowei

Monday, October 24, 2011

News Worthy: Creating a Community

An article from the Chicago Tribue recently shared the story of drug addicts coming clean and attending college. The battle they face they don't face alone.  Read portions of the article to see how this college community supported each other. 
To read the full article, click here.

Portions of the article are listed below:

Mark Spicer started smoking marijuana eight years ago when he was a sophomore at New Trier High School. By senior year, the dabbling had turned into a daily habit; at his small, liberal arts college, he added painkillers to the list. Despite multiple attempts at rehab, it took just a few weeks before he'd return to his hard-partying ways.

"About the only thing to do is go to frat parties, otherwise you don't have much of a social life … and alcohol and drugs are everywhere," said Spicer, 23, of Glencoe.

Now, the philosophy/environmental studies major is back in school, maintaining a 3.8 grade-point average and his sobriety. He's at Augsburg College in Minneapolis, a choice made not only for the academics but for its vibrant recovery community of 83 peers, all fighting the same battle.

Across the U.S., universities are paying closer attention to students like Spicer. Almost two dozen schools now have comprehensive recovery programs for those battling addictions.

Senior Mark Spicer, 23, of Glencoe, plays his guitar in a drug-free dorm at Augsburg College in Minneapolis this month. (Courtney Perry, Photo for the Chicago Tribune / October 17, 2011)

"This is their choice … and a lot of students are here on their own dime," said the program's director, Patrice Salmeri. "They found out what it's like to sit in jail, to be homeless, to be cut off by their parents. Some say they shouldn't even be alive right now … but they come here and they're ready."

For Spicer, it's hard to believe he's the same student who spiraled downward, stealing from his roommates for Vicodin, Xanax and Oxycontin, which he called "my first true love." He left Whitman College in Walla Walla, Wash., found Augsburg, got kicked out of StepUP, but remained in Minneapolis.

"One day, I just woke up and I was really sick with a sinus infection, from snorting all these pills … and I just had enough," Spicer said. "I went back to my friends at StepUP … and I credit these three guys with saving my life."

After six months of abstinence — a program requirement — Spicer re-enrolled. Now he's a resident assistant, on track to graduate in June. But his proudest accomplishment is 21 months of sobriety, which he calls "a gift."

Augsburg is also where everything clicked for Emily, a graduate of Oak Park-River Forest High School, who lasted only three semesters at Loyola University. Now a junior, she also attributes her achievement to a caring staff and forging strong bonds with those who share a similar history.

"We all go together to clubs, to concerts, dancing … we just don't drink. When I was in Chicago, I'd be the only one not drinking and I felt weird," she said.

"A few years ago, if anyone told me that I'd be going to college and getting good grades, I'd never believe them," said the psychology major, who asked that her last name not be used.

The same goes for Ezra Kaplan, who started drinking at Glenbrook North High School. After graduating in 2006, he attended Kalamazoo College, dropping out midway through his sophomore year.

"The life I was living wasn't conducive to academics," said Kaplan, 23. "My parents knew I was lying to them, drinking and smoking a lot more pot than I was saying."

Kaplan moved back to Northbrook in 2008, went to wilderness therapy and eventually checked into treatment in Prescott, Ariz. After discharge, he stayed in the small, central Arizona town, a hub for recovering addicts with more than 200 Alcoholics Anonymous/Narcotics Anonymous meetings a week.

Kaplan exited rehab and moved into transitional housing, where his roommates were part of Treehouse Learning Community, a private program that requires all students to be pursuing a degree. He now works for Treehouse while at Prescott College, where he is studying to be a chemistry teacher.

"At the end of the day, I came home to a sober environment instead of a drinking one," he said. "And I could see how it made all the difference."

Monday, October 10, 2011

From the Sam Jones Family: FSS

Freshman Service Scholars 2011

In the Sam Jones Program incoming freshman, known as Freshman Service Scholars (FSS), volunteer 2 hours a week at George Washington Community High School. It's an Indianapolis school just west of campus on Washington street. 

The FSS are tutors and a mentors to these kids as they help them with homework and interact with the students in activities and games. There have been many things the FSS have enjoyed about the experience, but there are also some challenges to overcome. 

What have they enjoyed the most about volunteering at George Washington?

"I love being someone to look up to."
- Jordan Morse, Elementary Education

"Helping the students and seeing them succeed."
- Sukhjeet Gill, Business Management

"The thing I enjoyed most was
interacting with the kids and getting to know them." 
- Brandon Coots, Exercise Science 

"Helping the kids with homework." 
- Whitney Eldridge, Nursing

"I really feel satisfied when I see
the difference my presence makes.
(i.e. when I'm able to help them complete 
a H.W. assignment they're having difficulty with." 
- Kimberly, Biology

"I really like spending club time with the kids.  
It's fun to play board games and 
just talk and get to know them. 
I can't wait to build relationships this coming year!" 
- Skye Leasure, Art Education

"I enjoyed spending time and meeting the kids. 
The best part is seeing the "Aha" moment on their face 
when they understand their homework." 
- Aaron Henson, Accounting

"It's been great being able to work with kids
who I can say are very much like I was
when I was in middle school and high school."
- Christele Igega, Nursing

Freshman Service Scholars

What has been a challenge at George Washington?

"Getting the students to do their 
homework and getting them to focus."
- Sukhjeet Gill, Business Management

"the hardest part was initially breaking the ice with the kids."
- Aaron Henson, Accounting

"Getting the kids to open up."
- Whitney Eldridge, Nursing

"I haven't experienced any major challenges yet."
-Brandon Coots, Exercise Science

"Getting the kids to actually focus on the tasks at hand.
It takes creativity!"
- Christele Igega

"Getting the kids to ask for help,
rather than having to approach them.  
Also, getting the kids to stay focused; 
they have short attention-spans 
and get easily distracted."
-Kimberly, Biology

"During homework-help time it was difficult 
a few times to get the children to focus. 
I've had to threaten separating them from their friends,
and that has worked.  
In the future,
hopefully I don't have to seek
further help in keeping them focused."
- Skye Leasure, Art Education 

"Finding ways to be helpful. 
Most of the students don't do their homework, 
or don't have any. 
So I wander.
- Thomesine Watts, Anthropology

"i have a student with major disciplinary problems.  
It's a challenge for me to try and explain to him that 
getting in trouble is not good, without trying
to be just another authoritative figure."
- Jordan Morse, Elementary Education

Friday, October 7, 2011

More Awareness...

Since October is a month abounding with issues to be aware of I couldn't pass up the opportunity to post more.
Below you will find more photos of things that you may want to be aware of during October:

National Dental Hygiene Month

National Chili Month

Spinach Lovers Month

National Depression Education and Awareness Month

Squirrel Awareness Month

National Down Syndrome Awareness Month

National Roller Skating Month

German-American Heritage Month

National Spina Bifida Awareness Month

National Popcorn Poppin' Month

National Go on a Field Trip Month

National "Gain the Inside Advantage" Month

This one I had to ask, what does that even mean? Basically, it is promoting awareness of the importance in strategic planning whether in business or general success.

There are always more issues to find out about on the following website:
Click Here if you're interested.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Be Aware This Month...Of What?

I was sitting in my office chair when the brilliant idea hit me. 
 I should let you know what social issues - large or small - you could be aware of this month.  When I did a google search I was hit with an overwhelming number of things we are supposed to be aware of in the month of October.
I can't even begin to list all the causes for the month of October - there's way too many - but I've listed some that made me laugh and caught my interest.

Disability Awareness Month, Nat'l
Caffeine Addiction Recovery Month
Sarcastic Awareness Month, Nat'l
Bake and Decorate Month
Stamp Collection Month, Nat'l
Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Nat'l
Dyslexia Awareness Month

There are plenty more causes this month. If you are involved with any this month let us know. 
Check out other issues online

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

News Worthy: A New Movement in Poverty

What is the perspective that middle-class urbanites should have toward helping inner-city poor?

Check out an article from the IndyStar.

Tim Streett

Tim Streett is a man with a vision. His vision, though, is not a quick fix plan that will putter out in a few years. It's going to require a dedication not only to reaching out to the poor.

It's going to require people to enter the community to learn about these people and build relationships - lasting relationships. It will take giving up preconceived ideas and understanding the cultural reasons behind poverty-stricken people's actions.

Can this man come teach his six-week course, "Poverty 101," at IUPUI?
I think I would take it.

Read this article, and let me know your thoughts either through comments or an e-mail to our Office.

Pictures used from IndyStar and Poverty 101 logo.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Care to Volunteer?

Whoever enjoys getting up early in the morning raise your hand!
Anyone? Am I the only one raising my hand right now?

Perhaps rolling out of bed on a Friday morning wasn't the motivation for students in volunteering at IUPUI's Day of Caring. It was impressive to see that they were still willing to come, join in the action, and volunteer.

A couple of students gave us their reasons for doing community service on IUPUI's Day of Caring.
Let us know your reasons for serving in the community! We'd love to hear your story!

Check out the Twitter posts from Day of Caring @ IUPUIOCS

Ashley's First Day of Caring

A Philanthropy Major's Reasons for Serving

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A New School Year...

...always brings...
...A fresh start.

Check us out in the future.

We'll be posting stories on all you volunteers.
Telling you more about us - Your Office of Community Service.
Taking time to delve in deep and seek out the truth on social issues and news stories.
Getting up close and personal with community partners.

Feel free to share any fresh ideas you may have for us as we begin this new school year!

We are your,

IUPUI Office of Community Service
Contact: Katy Frantz
Email: commserv@iupui.edu

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Alternative Breaks Fundraiser @ Noodles & Company

Love to eat? Better yet - love to eat Noodles & Company? Even better than that - love to eat Noodles and Company while benefitting IUPUI Alternative Breaks in their mission to promote social change in Indianapolis and cities across the country?

Come join us on Tuesday, April 19th from 11am - 7pm at the 10th and Indiana Ave. Noodles & Company.

Present the attached flyer or mention IUPUI Alternative Breaks at the register, and 25% of what you buy will go to assist IUPUI Alternative Breaks fund service trips for the fall and spring.

Every little bit helps, and why not enjoy some great food while helping out an even better cause? Click her for the flyer! http://bit.ly/i4Nsjm

Growing NearWest Garden Project

The Growing NearWest project is a community garden project in the NearWest neighborhoods of Haughville, Hawthorne, Stringtown, and We Care which present a unique opportunity to foster community engagement, capitalize on existing assets, and build community capacity to address food access issues.

Growing NearWest needs volunteers who would like to help prep the gardens on Saturday, April 30th. During this time, we will prep each garden that will include, but not limited to tilling the ground, mapping, and creating the raised beds.

Please join us on April 30th from 9am - 4pm to help prepare the community gardens!

Sign up here -http://bit.ly/fjZwd9

If you have any questions please contact, Maria Rubio mcrubio@iupui.edu

Monday, February 28, 2011

Meet the Office of Community Service: Ashley Winfield

Name: Whitney Zapien

Year in College: Senior

Major: Nursing

CSL Office Postion: Alternative Breaks Co-Coordinator

Description: Plan and lead alternative breaks, promost and assist ABS on campus, coordinate multiple ASB trips.

Favorite Community Service Project: Alternative Spring Break!

Why? You get to learn about the social issues and meet great people all while seeing the US and doing service! :)

Name: Andrew (Drew) Neibert

Year in College: Senior

Major: Business Management

CSL Office Position: MLK Day Coordinator

Description: Jan 17- over 500 participants helping build their community

Favorite Community Service Project: Day of Caring with Freshman Service Scholars (2009)

Why? I was their mentor that year and it let me spend time with them and see their personal dive and personalities individually.

Name: Riley Fore

Year in College: Junior

Major: Secondary Education

OCS Position: Freshman Service Mentor

Description: Mentor 14 incoming freshman on the processes of service learning

Favorite Community Service Project: Cesar Chavez Day of Service

Why?: "We set up a community fair and confucted service throughout the day. The community members enjoyed the activities and they were excited to see us helping their community."

Name: Colleen Games

Year in College: Junior

Major: Forensic Science & Chemistry

OCS Position: Volunteer Liaison

Description: Connect IUPUI Students & Staff to meaningful service

Favorite Community Service Project: All of them! (MLK day of Service and Cesar Chavez Day of Service are my top 2)

Why?: "I like seeing the high #s of volunteers who come out for the MLK Day and I think they are both people who deservce a day of service in their honor!"

Name: Ashley Winfield

Year in College: Junior

Major: Biology

OCS Position: Multicultural Outreach & Student Organization Liaison

Favorite Community Service Project: Global Youth Service Day

Why? : "I enjoy working with kids and seeing the lightbulb of service begin to shine in them!"

If you are interested in a Service Scholarship,

visit our website:

Color Your City!

Registration link coming SOON!

Monday, February 14, 2011

César Chávez Day of Service

Join IUPUI students to recognize Cesar Chavez, a Mexican American farm worker, labor leader, and civil rights activist whose work has led to numerous improvements for union laborers. He is considered a hero for farm laborers and is hailed as one of the greatest American civil rights leaders. In Cesar Chavez's honor a service day will take place:

Saturday, March 26, 2011.

Questions, Comments, or Concerns please e-mail the Office of Community Service at commserv@iupui.edu

To register for this great event: