On Sept. 29, the School of Humanities hosted a community service event to practice civility, the topic of this year’s Humanities Symposium. Approximately 75 volunteers, comprised of faculty, staff, students and Parents’ Day visitors, donated time and energy at four different non-profit groups in the Nashville community.
Twenty-five volunteers spent Saturday morning at Second Harvest Food Bank sorting pallets of frozen meat which will be delivered to multiple food pantries across Middle and West Tennessee. Volunteers gladly braved the 34-degree air in the cooler, with a few bursts of 6-degree air when the freezer was opened, in order to help those who have fallen on hard economic times.
Twenty additional volunteers spent the morning organizing donations to Room in the Inn, a downtown facility that provides myriad services to Nashville’s homeless. This group sorted and shelved household goods that will aid Room in the Inn participants in establishing homes; they also prepared scarves, hats, and gloves to be distributed to those who will be living on the streets in the coming winter months.
Eighteen volunteers converged on Hands On Nashville’s Urban Farm in South Nashville for a morning of garden labors. Volunteers cleared a parcel, turned a compost pile, harvested sunflower seeds, cleared beds and planted fall greens. HON’s farm offers more than 100 service opportunities each year and donates its harvests to local nonprofits that represent communities in need. Another volunteer group worked at Richland Urban Farm in West Nashville, spending their morning planting, weeding, bed-building and tilling.
All four groups were able to complete their assigned tasks in less time than expected and were complimented by the site managers on their quick and efficient work. All 75 participants left their work sites with smiles on their faces and increased civility in their hearts.