Recently, the Thayne Center for Service & Learning, a CLP-affiliated program at Salt Lake Community College (SLCC), organized a “Day of Service” as part of “its commitment to enhancing the communities of Salt Lake County.” As part of the annual event, nearly 200 students, staff and faculty donated a combined 450 hours during the event alongside nine organizations in the Salt Lake Valley.
Volunteer opportunities included meal preparation, reading stories, and general office support at organizations like Esperanza Elementary School, Catholic Community Services, and the Maliheh Free Clinic.
“I have been reluctant to organize service projects at the risk of perpetuating a ‘helping’ or deficit-perspective approach to community engagement,” Sean told us. “That said, we’re striving to incorporate our college’s Community Engagement Leave Benefit into a larger strategy around an institutional culture of reciprocal community engagement. In other words, we are trying to find some balance between the feel-good service projects that send our employees and students into the community, with the acknowledgement of community assets and more systems-oriented approaches to community change.”
Read more about the event here.