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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Holiday philanthropy opportunities abound in campus community

    Holiday philanthropy opportunities abound in campus community

    From hot-air balloons with food to toiletry drives for the homeless, the holiday season has UA students in the mood for giving.

    Students have been working local charities to spread holiday cheer through donations of food, clothes, toiletries and money to the less privileged.

    Lydia McCune, director of Project Volunteer for the University Activities Board, said 10 hot-air balloons will be on the UA Mall Saturday, with the goal of filling the baskets with non-perishable food items.

    “”The donations are for the people who are less fortunate out there and will allow them to have a good holiday season as well,”” said McCune, a molecular and cellular biology junior.

    The food will be distributed to needy families during the holidays, and monetary donations will be collected for the Tucson Food Bank, McCune said.

    Meanwhile, Patrick Vinck, a biochemistry senior, is leading a campuswide effort to collect food, toiletries and clothing for Tucson’s homeless community.

    “”It all really makes homeless people’s lives a little easier. And it shows that people care about them.””

    – Patrick Vinck,
    biochemistry senior

    “”It all really makes homeless people’s lives a little easier,”” Vinck said. “”And it shows that people care about them.””

    The drive, which has its main collection point at Coronado Residence Hall, will gather everything from hats and socks to toothpaste and deodorant – hopefully, items that students will remember to pick up while they’re at the grocery store, said Vinck.

    “”The need is constant throughout the year, but especially now that the weather is changing and people need things to keep warm,”” Vinck said.

    For the food drive, McCune said she hopes that the spectacle of the hot-air balloons will attract donors.

    “”It will be beautiful,”” McCune said. “”All of those hot-air balloons will be in contrast to the Tucson sunset, and it’ll look amazing.””

    Fortunately, ’tis the season for giving, and people are more compelled to make such donations during this time, said Brian Hewlett, a graduate student in sociology.

    “”During the holidays, we are surrounded with the sacred things that make us feel good,”” Hewlett said.

    When people feel good, they want to give back to the community, Hewlett said. That is why people are more inclined to give during the holidays.

    “”On one hand, you want to give to others as a contribution, but on the other hand you want to give because it makes you feel good,”” Hewlett said.

    “”It’s a good time, and people are in the mood to give,”” Vinck said.

    The hot-air balloons will be on the Mall accepting food donations Saturday, McCune said.

    Donations to the toiletry drive can be dropped off in the front lobby at Coronado Residence Hall through Dec. 15, and they are also accepting easy-to-open non-perishable foods, Vinck said.

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