Students took to the Galesburg community on Saturday, Sept. 22 to explore and volunteer in the town. From pulling weeds at the Knox Farm to cleaning up the Galesburg Historical Society, there was something for everyone. The men’s basketball team helped sort clothes at the Purple Hanger thrift store on Broad Street. Students cleaned and sorted at the Discovery Depot Children’s Museum, making way for new exhibits planned for the second floor.
The event was made possible by the Kleine Center for Community Service, who organized the event with AmeriCorps Vista member Maddie Piero ‘17 at the forefront.
“It’s an easy way to be social, and to meet people that have like interests. And get involved with a group of people for about three hours,” Director of the Kleine Center, Kathleen Ridlon, said.
A grant from the Mary Filosa Brown Fund provides funds for the tri-annual day of service, of which there is one each term. The fall day of service is always themed as “Explore & Engage,” encouraging new and returning students to get involved in the Galesburg community. In the winter, the day of service usually takes place in the Center for Fine Arts, and is “winter wonderland” themed.
Service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega (APO) sponsored the event. Their brothers acted as the guides for each group. Senior Jyotsna Seesala, president of APO, served as the leader of the group who helped out at the Knox Farm.
“I really enjoy it, it’s really fun. I love working on the Knox farm, it’s very relaxing,” Seesala said. “I think getting your hands dirty in service is really fun.”
Ridlon hopes the day of service acts as a kick-off for a great year of Knox students volunteering in the community.
“It’s a perfect introduction to some of our long-term community partners, so you might be doing something at the Galesburg Public Library, and then we have a long-term partnership with them,” she said. “You’re basically getting involved in the community around campus.”