Discover Your Island

125 Islander Faculty and Staff Reach out to Local Community During Global Day of Giving

December 02, 2016

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CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Faculty and staff at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi participated in #GivingTuesday, a global initiative inviting people from all corners of the world to give back to their communities. #GivingTuesday takes place on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. This year, it fell on Tuesday, Nov. 29. This is the third year Island University faculty and staff have participated in #GivingTuesday.

“Participating in something that is going on worldwide is pretty exciting,” said Ann DeGaish, Associate Vice President for Student Engagement and Success and Dean of Students at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. “The Corpus Christi community provides so much support for the university that it’s important for us to give back in person to the community.”

To support the university’s Momentum 20/20 plan, the division of Student Engagement and Success began looking for a way to a be more involved in the local community. Three years ago, they discovered this program and decided to make it available to faculty and staff campus-wide. This year, 125 Islander faculty and staff volunteers contributed 269 hours of service and were able to make a difference at ten off-campus locations. The number of participants has increased dramatically from 44 participants in 2014.

“Giving Tuesday is an important event for our campus to be involved in because we are able to give back to the community,” said Claudia Ayala, Assistant Director at the University Counseling Center. “I am amazed at how many new people are interested in participating each year.”

Volunteers participated many service-based activities including sorting goods for the Food Bank of Corpus Christi and donating blood at the Coastal Bend Blood Center. Other volunteer sites included the Glenoak Therapeutic Riding Center, Mission 911, The Gulf Coast Humane Society and Gloria Hicks Elementary School. A group of volunteers also handed out warm meals to the homeless at Corpus Christi Metro Ministries.

“I was overwhelmed by the response of our faculty and staff to the program,” said DeGaish. “I’m looking forward to Giving Tuesday growing each year. I am very grateful that Dr. Killebrew has supported this program and has allowed us this opportunity.”

#GivingTuesday was founded in 2012 by New York’s 92nd Street Y in partnership with the United Nations Foundation. Together, with a team of influencers and founding partners, a global movement was launched that has engaged more than 10,000 organizations worldwide.

“For me, higher education was a way out of poverty and doing things like participating in Giving Tuesday reminds how fortunate I am,” said Dr. Amy Aldridge Sanford, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. “If not for my higher education, I could be in similar situations. It is humbling for me to work in these non-profit spaces where I am able to hear people’s stories, humanize them and provide hope.”

To see the full #GivingTuesday photo album, click HERE.