Adopt a Veteran Drive Being Held Entire Month of October

Adopt a Veteran Drive Being Held Entire Month of October

Alyssa Stegura, Reporter

The Adopt a Veteran Ministry is hosting a drive for the VA Medical Center through the month of October.

Items to be collected are blankets, towels, washcloths, bathroom essentials, adult coloring books, playing cards, sweatshirts, sweatpants, candy, and monetary donations. All donations must be new and may be placed in the designated box in Banks Student Life Center or at the office for Mission, Ministry and Service.

The Adopt a Veteran Ministry was started approximately five years ago by Lindsey Riddell, Community Outreach Coordinator and a student leader.

“A student leader and I volunteered once at the VA and had such a wonderful experience, we decided to make it a ministry where students are able to volunteer on a monthly basis,” said Riddell.

In previous years, students were able to go to the VA Medical Center in Plains Township and help veterans play various activities, such as Bingo and wheelchair basketball, or just spend time with a veteran.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, those involved with the ministry are unable to volunteer in person at the VA. This drive serves as a way to collect requested donations for the veterans.

Many students expressed their excitement for this drive as a way to give back to those who fought for our freedoms.

“It feels amazing to give back and get involved, as today more than ever is important to make a veteran’s day brighter,” said Jillian Rogers, senior psychology, pre-DPT major.

Students like senior psychology major Karri Baker have said the need to help veterans is so important and all who are able to donate should do so.

“Everyone who is able should donate to our veterans because they deserve the necessities that we all take for granted,” said Baker.

Students like senior mass communications and design major Mitchell Hall feel strongly about donating.

“I have lots of veterans in my family and know first-hand the sacrifices veterans make for us, so it’s our time to help those in need,” said Hall.

Some of the items are essential for veterans at the VA Medical Center while other items are special gifts and activities to help brighten their days.

“This is great for student volunteers and our veterans as they are still able through the drive to connect from a distance,” said Riddell.

Many students have stated their feelings of joy for these drives and why members of the campus community should get involved and volunteer.

Rogers said, “I’m so happy campus is raising money to help veterans; it’ll be extremely beneficial to those who donate and the veterans.”

Like Rogers, Baker also expressed how giving back to those who need it always makes the day brighter.

“It truly makes you realize how lucky we are to be able to give back,” she said.

Students like Hall, who have seen first-hand how hard veterans suffer from the effects of serving and war, they know that sometimes even the smallest things make the veterans so grateful that they were thought of and not forgotten.

“For my family veterans, it always warmed their heart to see cards from people or clothes; it made them teary-eyed to be respected and that someone appreciates their hard work,” he said.

Many students hope the veterans feel the love and care from these donations and that they know their service for this country will never go unnoticed.

“I truly hope the veterans feel supported and receive all that they are in need of,” said Rogers.

Baker stated the veterans deserve community support now more than ever.

“This a hard time for all, but those veterans deserve everything for the all they gave,” said Baker.

The Adopt a Veteran Ministry hopes the Misericordia community gets involved in this drive and much more.

“We hope the community will remember all the sacrifices our local veterans have made for our country and want to help, even if it’s a small way through donation,” said Riddell.

No donation is too small and every little bit will go a long way to support these veterans. Donations are being accepted until Oct. 31.

Anyone interested in donating may do so by dropping off donations at the box in the Banks Student Life Center lobby, the office for Mission Ministry Service or Venmo to MUMissionMinistryService.

“We appreciate your generosity and hope to fill the boxes and provide loads to the VA Medical Center,” said Riddell.

Anyone who would like to get involved in the Adopt a Veteran Ministry or any other projects in the Ministry may contact Riddell or the office for Mission, Ministry, and Service.