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Volunteer opportunities abound in Weber/Davis County

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Students talk with a representative from Give Me A Chance about opportunties available with their organization at the Volunteer Fair held at WSU's main campus on Wednesday. (Robert Lewis The Signpost)

Volunteering can be a great experience for many students. Even if a student may need community service hours for a class or they just enjoy helping others in need such as tutoring kids at a school, the time spent can be a valuable learning experience.

The Spring Volunteer Fair showcased many of these opportunities. The fair was held in the Shepherd Union Atrium on Jan. 29 so students could hear all about the great volunteer and community service opportunities that are available, especially in and around the Ogden area.

One of these many opportunities is Forever Bound Adoption, an adoption agency that is run out of Morgan, Utah. They have a national and international reach.

CEO of Forever Bound Adoption Steve Sunday said, “I’ve had a lot of volunteers. Students from WSU have been excellent. We get social work students mostly, but it’s open to everyone,” said Sunday.

Many of the opportunities at the fair involved helping children at different schools throughout Weber and Davis counties with their schoolwork as kids often need extra help after school so they can improve or keep up with the class.

Family and Volunteer Specialist Brett Lund of the Davis School District said, “Students can help them work on educational goals. Also volunteers would be reading and doing outdoor activities with the kids. A good percentage of our volunteers come from Weber State, and we are open to meet students schedules.”

The Ogden School District also mentioned how volunteering does not have to be a large time commitment to go and help the kids out after school.

Carrie Maxson of the Ogden School District said, “Last semester we had the wildcat scholars come in and volunteer with the kids. The times to volunteer would be after-school hours. We will work with student schedules. There’s no time limit on how long a person must volunteer.”

Ogden-Weber Community Action Partnership or OWCAP was present at the fair and speaking about their HeadStart program where college students can volunteer in the classroom with the kids and gain valuable experience inside the classroom.

Kim Hall, OWCAP’s volunteer/community outreach specialist, also discussed some of the other opportunities available at OWCAP such as internships in business, early childhood education, social work and medical/health promotion.

“Students can also take part in VITA where they will be trained by the IRS and become tax preparation certified,” said Hall.

For students looking for a more hands on experience, Habitat for Humanity Weber and Davis shared about the home they are building on Grant Avenue. They also like volunteers every day until the homes are completed.

“What we do is we build homes for people who are low income or are disabled,” said volunteer coordinator for Habitat for Humanity Weber and Davis Tallie Vetas.

Vetas also discussed that she appreciates Weber State professors who require community service in their classes because it gets people out in the community.

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