Oakland University Students Volunteer at VLP for Spring Break!
BY Laurie Menekou
March 02, 2017
Instead of heading to the beaches of Panama City or hopping on a cruise to the Bahamas, fifteen students and one chaperone from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, spent their spring break volunteering with Victory Living Programs (VLP).
The students volunteered through Alternative Spring Break, a nonprofit organization that offers week-long community service projects around the country. For the past six years, VLP has had the good fortune of having college students join them during spring and winter breaks to volunteer at the Community Inclusion/Adult Day Training Program.
Starting Monday, February 22, 2017 the students participated in all activities along with VLP staff, including volunteering at Margate Elementary School and with “In Jacob’s Shoes”, a nonprofit that refurbishes shoes for children who can’t afford new ones. In addition, they made chicks and bunnies out of pom-poms for the children at the Jack & Jill Children’s Center. Throughout the week, the cooking class at VLP provided hot lunches for the Oakland University students.
“We love having the students come here,” said Robyn Ames, supervisor of the Community Inclusion/Adult Day Training Program at Victory Living Programs. “The students and the participants in the program both love meeting new people and interacting with fellow volunteers.”
In honor of the group’s last day on Thursday, February 23, 2017 VLP staff organized a scavenger hunt in the park nearby as well as a dance contest, and each student received a certificate of appreciation to commemorate their service.
“At the end of the week, one student came up to me and said ‘You have no idea how this changed me," Ames said. “These students are gaining valuable experiences with people with disabilities and are getting to know them well. On behalf of the entire VLP family – thank you to all the students who spent their week with us!”