Sunday, October 19, 2008

Good Stuff in TEC: Arkansas

Make a Difference Day is part of a national event devoted to community service and helping nonprofit groups.

"You're working with a group of your peers and you're making a real impact on the area," said Matt McNelley, of the Volunteer Action Center.

Some students built a library for a tutoring program for elementary school kids at St. Paul's Episcopal Church.

"If I tried to do all the things that they're going to do today, it would take me until the end of the semester," said Emily Bost, of St. Paul's Episcopal Church.

Another group was at the botanical gardens, helping to give seniors a closer look at nature.
"They have been so nice," said student Debbie Farkas. "They're sharing their stories with us, where they're from, what they did. It's been really fun."

Other projects included park cleanups, teaching elementary school children about voting and holding a fundraising bake sale for the Alzheimer's Association.

"It's contagious," said McNelley. "You get into it and you start out and you want to get something done and you want to make a difference. Once you actually start seeing the effects, it makes it feel all worth it."

Last year, about 200 students took part in Make a Difference Day. This year, the number almost tripled.

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