Editorial: Volunteer opportunities, a way to reach out

College life at Villanova can be hectic. Running from one class to another, followed by a series of meetings and activities can be tiring. Free time does not come too often, but when it does, let’s take advantage of it.

And not by playing Madden 2005 on Playstation 2 or surfing the Internet aimlessly.

Really taking advantage of free time means getting involved in volunteer services on campus. Villanova offers a wide variety of weekend and week-long Habitat for Humanity programs ranging from close locations in nearby Philadelphia to locations out of the country in dire need of help.

These trips, such as the one being offered over the upcoming Fall Break, involve a small group of about 15 students, two of whom act as advisers, who work at a building location for a week. Sometimes when the group arrives, the house has nothing more than a dirt foundation. Other times, the structure has been built, but needs to be completed.

The experience of Villanova’s Habitat for Humanity is unparalleled among all the outlets for use of leisure time. The bonding that happens within the group over the span of one week is as strong as the house’s foundation itself. Becoming involved in such an experience has the potential to impact the lives of the students who are participating on the trip, the community where the house is located and the future of the family that moves into the home.

If a week in another state or country isn’t exactly your calling, Villanova also offers afternoon opportunities through Project Sunshine. Groups tutor children after school, assist elderly people, and work to serve the community as a whole.

For students such as ourselves, who oftentimes play the role of the “poor college kid,” there really is a benefit in understanding the wide world beyond our campus that needs our time and patience.

Even though the overall problem of poverty may be too large for us to solve individually, every day we give to volunteerism brings someone else closer to the comfort of everyday living that we take for granted every day at Villanova.