Fixing social issues

You’ve spent countless hours interviewing family members to better assess their situation. You’re burned-out, and loaded with information you have to sort through. Thankfully you have knowledge gained through the Social Issues Club at Castleton University to help you help them.

The Social Issues club at Castleton University holds events to raise awareness on topics, and raises money for organizations that interact with those issues. The club advocates the act of paying good deeds forward to the community.

“Our goal as a club is to help not only our community in the Rutland/Castleton area, but getting people involved with volunteering and being a part of things bigger than ourselves,” said club President Kayla Vaillancourt.

Vaillancourt said the club will soon host a spaghetti dinner to help a former student and her family.

“Our most recent project we are working on is donating Easter baskets to nine children who live with poor families, who don’t have much at all. The spaghetti dinner, is going to be a charity event for a former student’s family. The student recently lost her sister to a severe battle with cancer,” Vaillancourt said.

A date for the dinner has yet to be set, but club members hope to be able to use the 1787 Room in the

Campus Center. The cost is $5 for their meal and drink and Vaillancourt said the event will be great to “socialize with our community.”

Luther Brown, faculty advisor of the club, talked about the background of the club and how it was revamped so it could be deemed more successful.

“The club was initially known as the Social Work Club, but we wanted to expand the range of students who actually participate. By calling it Social Issues instead of Social Work it will draw in students from other majors on the campus, so perhaps about ten years ago it was changed to the Social Issues Club. Last year the primary participants were seniors and when practically all of them graduated the club sort of died so to speak. This semester we’ve made an attempt to revitalize the club by getting new officers and getting non-social work students to take an interest in the club,” he said.

Brown said the club correlates with issues that affect our society.

“The club is designed to identify social issues. We want people to identify consequences of social issues, consequences that are psychological or social,” Brown said.

Students involved in the club feel they are making a difference.

 “I thought it would be a good way to get involved around the community more, and it was a good way for us as social workers to get together and help those in need. I hope that we will be able to complete our goals and missions that we have planned in order to help people help themselves, and lend them a helping hand,” said Junior Karyn Burns.

Sophomore Elly Zelazny joined the club for a different reason.

“I joined the club bewcause I’m a social work major and my teacher advised me to join. I hope to get some experience in my field out of this, and possibly figure out what I want to do with my future,” she said.

Those interested in more information can come by Leavenworth room 203 at 3:30-4:30 on Tuesday’s to check out the club meetings or email Vaillancourt.

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