Club Focus: Community Outreach

Possible Outreach sites for the year include farming at the Food Bank Farm, cleaning up a river and painting for non-profit organizations.

“Community Outreach began in 1986 without a coordinator, a formal office or much recognition; since then, it’s grown dramatically,” said Outreach Assistant Director, Tom Lepak. “Through different community partnerships, Outreach formed many new programs, ranging from a freshmen orientation trip to intern programs in Washington, D.C.”

Outreach facilitates relationships between different Amherst student groups and community organizations. It is also a central resource for people interested in service and justice work. “About one-third of Amherst students participate in Outreach every year,” said Lepak. “Some do community service once a year; others are totally dedicated, full-time volunteers.”

About 60 widely varying Amherst groups are connected to Outreach and most will partake in Community Outreach’s new service activity.

“We’re really working on publicity and we hope that a lot of people show, so we can continue to do this next year,” said Angie Han ’05, chapter president of MASSPIRG, an Outreach-related group.

“We’re really hoping that everyone-students, faculty and staff-will come out for the afternoon,” said Lepak. “Every person makes a difference.” People can still sign up on the 14th, just by showing up at Valentine for the community luncheon. Check for more information on the day of service.