Volunteer opportunities abound on Make a Difference Day

Western Today staff

On Saturday, Oct. 22, students, faculty and staff will work side-by-side with community members to improve the parks, watersheds and social service agencies of Whatcom County. Make a Difference Day, in its 16th year, is a national day of service sponsored locally by the Whatcom Volunteer Center.

All members of the Whatcom community are invited to gather in the morning to eat a free breakfast and then break into groups to volunteer for a specific project for the day.

Projects include restoring salmon habitat with the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association, doing yard work at the Sean Humphrey House – a community home and health center for people living with HIV/AIDS, preparing for an auction fundraiser for Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services, or cleaning up one of many public parks. Other opportunities are also available; last year 35 community organizations requested help for their projects.

This day of service is an exceptional opportunity for WWU to engage in the larger community and promote active learning and involvement. Interested individuals and groups can sign up for a MADD project through the WVC website or on www.1-800-volunteer.org under a search for Make a Difference Day in Bellingham.

There are many opportunities to volunteer in the community. The Whatcom Volunteer Center is now on campus every Thursday from noon to 4 p.m. at the Center for Service-Learning (Wilson Library Room 481) to advise students on finding a volunteer placement specific to their interests, skills or academic area of study.

For more information, contact Arcadia Trueheart at the Center for Service-Learning at (360) 650-7542 or service.learning@wwu.edu.