EAST STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Every year, East Stroudsburg University students particiapte in a Day of Service in honor of Martin Luther King Junior. The event was held today, since students are now back on campus after the holiday.
Eyewitness News stopped by to see how they contributed to the community this time around.
East Stroudsburg University students are busy packing more than 100 bags of hope for foster children involved with Monroe County Children and Youth Services.
“I have to realize I’m very blessed for the opportunities I’ve been afforded in life, which gave me the opportunity to give back. So why not?” says Naimah Stevens, ESU junior.
Students, faculty, and staff have been collecting hygiene products, journals, basketballs, stuffed animals and other items for the foster children who usually aren’t prepared when they enter the system.
“It’s very important because our children come into foster care sometimes with just the shirts on their back,” explains Berthy Calvache-Murphy, case worker/foster care coordinator.
Once the students stuff the care bags, they’re invited to write personalized notes to include inside.
“I feel like right now the foster care system is in disarray and a lot of children get lost in the system. And so just showing them there are people out there that care about them specifically, it’s a nice feeling,” Stevens adds.
Mentors with Monroe County’s Big Brothers Big Sisters program also attended, to hopefully encourage students to get involved.
“There are a lot of children on our list right now who are actually waiting for active matches. So it’s a process that we are looking for bigs, as we call them. Big brothers and big sisters,” says Joshua Walker, board member.
Lightening the load, by filling book bags.
Every year, ESU’s Day of Service benefits a different group. In the past, students made blankets for the homeless, did activities with head start students and organized a health and wellness fair for the community.