RCC students help each other

With increasing tuition fees, students across the nation struggle to pay for the classes they need. Some students, however, may not even know when their next meal is coming. 

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By Jesse Garcia / Staff Writer

PROVIDING A HELPING HAND (Yasmeen Salama / Asst. News Editor )

By Jesse Garcia / Staff Writer

With increasing tuition fees, students across the nation struggle to pay for the classes they need. Some students, however, may not even know when their next meal is coming.     

After speaking with their fellow students, the Associated Students RCC found that many students were without basic amenities and some were even homeless. In the fall semester of 2009, the student body addressed the problem by starting a project called Action.

The project began by providing students with needed items such as toothpaste, laundry detergent, and small utensils.  By word of mouth, Action grew into a very successful program, receiving frequent donations from the general student population, staff, and faculty.

The success of the program led to its expansion at the beginning of March to include non-perishable food items. These items are available to all RCC students, though they are intended specifically for those in need.

To get started, students must fill out a sign-in sheet asking for their student ID, gender, and comments.  

“We ask for a student ID to make sure they are RCC students,” said Deborah Hall, associate professor/coordinator for the student activities office. She said that because some students prefer to remain anonymous, little personal information is required.

“It’s low key, and I think it’s important to keep it low key,” she said.

Once signed in, students can talk to a representative in the office to get started on an optional “care package”, which includes a variety of items tailored to the specific needs of the individual. Most registered students, however, just go in and grab things as they need.

Because the availability of items is based on donations, when any particular item is running low, student services sends an e-mail out to faculty and staff requesting donations for the item.   

Students generally learn about contributions they can make by word of mouth. You can make a toiletry or non-perishable food donation directly to the student government or you can bring your donations down to the student services office and drop them in one of the six designated bins or the food cabinet.

Items available consist of, canned foods and soups, dry foods, feminine items, lotion, conditioner, shampoo, and laundry detergent, one of the more popular items available.

Information about WIC, a federal health and nutrition program for women, infants, and children, is also available.

“This is a program for the students, started by the students, and we hope to keep it open as long as possible,” said Rebecca Farcloth, a representative at the student service office.  

For more information on the project to help donate or receive toiletries and non-perishable food items talk to a student body member or visit the student services office.

 

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