Ever since my freshman year at Mount Union, I have been fortunate to be a part of Raider Relief, an awesome student organization here on campus. We have an underlying mission statement: Student-driven humanitarianism, helping those in need with passion, love and good deeds. Basically our group recognizes the needs of people less fortunate than ourselves and acts upon those needs in a fashion that is timely, sympathetic and rewarding. Some of our past philanthropic projects have been Soles for Souls, Hugs for Haiti, Help to Others, March Makeover and most recently a Walk 2 Remember.
Not only do we strive to impact Mount Union’s local community of Alliance, Ohio, but we extend help to people all over the world by partnering with other charitable organizations. By teaming up with other charities we have declared our organization as a non-profitable group, where 100% of all of our earnings are donated to those in need.
This year our project is a Bottle School Blitz – a 10-day community and campus-wide fund-raising effort. The project will benefit Hug it Forward, a not-for-profit organization with an innovative approach to improving the educational infrastructure of developing nations. Hug It Forward focuses on building schools in Guatemala out of plastics bottles and non-biodegradable trash. The area of Guatemala has around a 25% illiteracy rate and many places don’t even have schools for children to learn in. These places are recognizable from the non-profit’s executive director, who used to do Peace Corps work in the area, and is able to recognize communities in dire need.
The Bottle School Blitz project consists of two phases. The first of which (the community blitz) will take place on Saturday, November 19. Teams of student volunteers will staff tables set up outside of more than a dozen high-traffic retail locations throughout Alliance, asking shoppers for donations to support the project’s cause. The second phase will be campus based. Empty plastic beverage bottles will be issued to hundreds of students before they head home for Thanksgiving break. Each student will be challenged to fill his or her bottle with spare change from home and return to campus with a coin-filled bottle.
The last, and ongoing phase, is an online donation site for those who cannot help with the community or campus initiative. If you would like to donate or share the donation site with anyone, please click this link! I sure hope that everyone reading this can help our project in any way possible. Share it with friends, family and online … a little help by a lot of people can go a long way. Help be the change we want to see in the world!