Community service offers life lessons

Other Staff

While most students worry about their classes, social lives, and wardrobe, these thoughts do not fill the minds of all. Campus students have many different focuses and some take advantage of opportunities to volunteer and do their part to help the community.

Melissa Bump, ’05, lives at the Fresno Rescue Mission. Bump has lived there for four years, since her father was asked to be the assistant manager.

“My average day would consist of answering phones and helping people with their questions,” Bump said. “Or sometimes I get to play with little kids. But, it is not the acts that I enjoy; it’s seeing the joy in their eyes that comes from knowing that someone cares about them.”

The Webster’s dictionary definition of a volunteer is someone who renders aid, performs a service, or assumes an obligation voluntarily. Many students on campus volunteer beyond the required hours of community service needed for Bible class.

“I volunteer at St. Agnes Medical Center because it is good for the community,” Laura Berg, ’04, said. “It gives me a warmth in my heart to know that I am doing things to help better humanity.”

Along with the students who willingly volunteer aid, there are also students who volunteer only because it is required from campus Bible studies.

“I think it is a good idea for students to have to perform community service because it teaches them to give back to the community that has given so much to them,” Greg Page campus Bible teacher, said. “Also it helps them serve others and help the less fortunate.”

Many students are grateful for the life lessons that volunteering offers them.

“I am glad that our Bible classes require us to do community service,” Suyen Millian, ’05, said. “It gives the community more help and support than the normal amount of students that would volunteer on their own. I think it also teaches us valuable life lessons, like always being grateful for what we have been blessed with.”

A wise man once said that the best way to receive the joy of the holidays is to help someone else, and with the holidays around the corner, the opportunities and need for volunteers is more acute.

There are many places to volunteer in Fresno, such as: San Joaquin Gardens Retirement Community, Holy Cross Clinic at the Poverello House, Catholic Charities and the Make A Wish Foundation.

For a website which lists volunteer opportunities, visit www.volunteerfresno.org/connect.html or contact secretary Yoko Kilbourne in the office. Fifteen local organizations need volunteers for spring semester.