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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

SJVC students volunteer for Habitat for Humanity

September 17, 2014

SJVC Rancho Cordova participates in Habitat for HumanityVolunteerism is an important part of the overall student experience at SJVC. Recently, six Respiratory Therapy students on the Rancho Cordova campus got to find that out first-hand.

Under the direction of Michelle Tapp, Learning Resource Center Coordinator and Amy Bianco, Dean of Student Services, these Term 4 students contributed four hours on two separate days to helping Habitat for Humanity restore and organize construction materials and supplies, as well as donated items coming into their warehouse. Habitat is an international, non-profit organization that is devoted to building “simple, decent and affordable” housing that has addressed the issues of poverty housing all over the world.

Those students making the trip to Habitat for Humanity’s Sacramento site were: Robert Wallace, Joseph Castro, Curtis Echevarria, Holly Van Brocklin, Aaron Palpallatoc and Shannon Stang.

After a brief orientation, volunteers unloaded, cleaned, organized and priced donated furniture. They also participated in selling furniture to buyers and helping them to load purchases into vehicles.

“The day we arrived, they received truckloads of furniture donated by The Hilton Hotel chain,” says Holly Van Brocklin. “Although we didn’t actually help build a house, knowing the work we did to contribute to the program was heartwarming.”

Money from the sale of donated items helps to pay for some of the costs of building low-income housing. Recipient families and volunteers work to build each home, which takes about six months.

“I am very proud of our students’ volunteer involvement,” says Amy Bianco. “Most volunteer opportunities are on weekends, so our students make a sacrifice to be of service to the community.”

SJVC has been participating with Habitat for Humanity twice a year for about six years. Students learn what community involvement can mean to those needing assistance with their missions of goodwill, while they also learn about teamwork and the versatility of their own skills and knowledge.

“We can’t wait to go back and volunteer more time to this very deserving cause,” says Holly.