Student volunteers recently offered their time and energy to help out at Cradles to Crayons, an organization that collects toys, clothes, books, and school supplies for children in need. Close to 40 Ursinus students made cards and organized clothing for children in the Philadelphia area.
“Overall it was a very successful day and several of the volunteers have decided to commit to volunteering at Cradles on a weekly basis, based on their experience,” said Tabi Rudzinski, UCARE Service Fellow.
The Cradles to Crayons event was held at the Cradles to Crayons warehouse in in Conshohocken, Pa. The supplies are distributed to children throughout Philadelphia. Volunteers are assigned various tasks depending on group size and need. These jobs can be anything from cleaning shoes to packing up bags of clothing based on the season and child size, said Rudzinski.
Volunteering was a unique and rewarding experience, said sophomore Danielle Kritz.
“The amount of children’s lives you can touch in the small amount of hours spent there made it positive,” said Kritz. “It is also a lot of fun to volunteer with a big group of people because you are constantly having a good time and the toys and books and clothes you are sorting through remind you of your own childhood. These little things remind you of your own past and of how the little things can really be big things in the eyes of a child.”
Events like these are important because they give students the opportunity to take action toward meeting a community-defined need while learning about the great work done by organizations like Cradles to Crayons, said Katie Turek, Assistant Director of UCARE.
“The student volunteers also have the opportunity to reflect on themselves, how they fit into the bigger picture, and how a commitment to service will play out for them, both as students and active citizens,” said Turek.