Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

On Sept. 11, as part of the National Day of Service, WCU’s Office of Service-Learning and Volunteer Programs held the volunteer fair. The fair gave students an opportunity to explore the many different volunteer opportunities to West Chester students.
 “There are 60 organizations present today,” said Jodi Roth, director of the Office of Service-Learning and Volunteer Programs. “There are so many different ways for students to get involved.”
 One example of this is Camp Dreamcatcher. Camp Dreamcatcher is a facility in nearby Kennett Square dedicated to providing year-round programs for children whose lives have been touched by HIV/AIDS. Greek organizations at WCU are especially active with Camp Dreamcatcher. Since WCU students started volunteering at Camp Dreamcatcher 17 years ago, the Greek organizations have donated more than $350,000.
 “Seventy percent of our volunteers are West Chester students,” said Patty Hillkirk, Camp Dreamcatcher Director. “We love WCU!”
 Another table at the volunteer fair was taken up by Alternative Spring Break, which is a unique opportunity available to students who are looking to do more with their spring breaks than lie on the beach or party. Alternative Spring Break gives students an opportunity to lend a helping hand during their time off from school.
“Alternative Spring Break is a great first step in the door of volunteering,” said Mark Fala, a student involved with Alternative Spring Break. “It’s an opportunity to meet other great students, and it’s truly amazing what we can get done in one week. I’m proud to be a part of it, and it’s the best spring break I’ve ever had.”
Alternative Spring Break 2013 went to Staten Island to aid in Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. The destination of Alternative Spring Break 2014 has yet to be determined; any student interested in pursuing Alternative Spring Break can email Mark Fala at
Some of the numerous other organizations at the Volunteer Fair include the Chester County Intermediate Unit Literacy Program, First West Chester Fire Co., ReMed Recovery Care Centers, and the Lionville Community YMCA, among others.
“We printed off 400 copies of the organizations list, and we have to go get more,” said Jodi Roth. “Between our attendance of more than 400 students and the 60 organizations present, I’d definitely say this volunteer fair has been a success.”
Clare Haggerty is a third-year student majoring in English. She can be reached at

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