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The Observer

Case Western Reserve University's independent student news source

The Observer

Case Western Reserve University's independent student news source

The Observer

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Case for Community Day sparks volunteer spirit

Every year, hundreds of Case Western Reserve University staff, faculty, and students come together to give back to the greater Cleveland community during Case for Community Day (CCD).

CCD was started by the Staff Advisory Council in 2002 as a way for staff and faculty to become more involved in the Cleveland community without having to lose their vacation time. CCD was also established in hopes of improving staff and faculty camaraderie. Although it was established for CWRU staff and faculty, the first event was so successful that CWRU students also wanted to participate.

The first CCD attracted approximately 100 participants. Now, 10 years later, it has grown into a stronger and more impactful event. Approximately 400 people, including staff, faculty, and students, are estimated to participate in this year’s event.

During CCD, staff, faculty, and students can register to volunteer for local organizations or community service projects around Cleveland. Some examples of this year’s activities include providing health screenings to community members and painting areas of the Salvation Army Hough Center.

“I am really excited to participate in Case for Community Day. I really want to give back to the community I now call home” said CWRU undergraduate Torin Colchagoff.

Latisha James, senior director for local government and community relations at CWRU and the head organizer of CCD, commented on its importance and community volunteerism in general.

“It is so important for all organizations to serve the community where they are residing. Not only does it help introduce the campus to organizations in our backyard that need help, but it also helps relieve the burden for a lot of people who are dealing with less resources,” said James. “In addition, it’s a rewarding experience for all CWRU participants. Approximately nine out of ten people who are volunteering feel like they have made a difference in the community, which is such a fulfilling emotion.”

Service is such an integral part of CWRU that Washington Monthly ranked CWRU seventh among universities that encourage students to give back, above institutions like Harvard University and the University of Michigan.

“Although CCD is one day a year, it is a great example of what the CWRU community does year-round. The CWRU campus is very involved in outreach. Collectively, all eight schools and all of the campus centers contributed approximately 425,000 hours of service last year” said James.

Even though CWRU is highly engaged in community service outreach, there is still much room for improvement.

“There is always room for improvement and getting more students involved in service,” said James. “If students want more information about how they can volunteer throughout the year, they can contact the Center for Civic Engagement and Learning.”

This year’s CCD will occur on Oct. 19, 2012. If staff, faculty, or students would like to volunteer, visit the CCD page on CWRU’s website. Registration ends today.

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