On Friday, October 20th, Perrysburg High School seniors experienced their first ever volunteer day called Jackets Giving Back.
“A lot of people I knew were doubting it before, and I heard a lot of people being negative about it. Afterwards, I got a lot of positive feedback and people were really excited,” said Ayliana Moehling, the senior who organized the event.
Students first gathered in the auditorium to meet the chaperones for each location. Following the meeting, seniors then filed onto buses for each location, or group of locations, and proceeded to their volunteer site. Students could choose among sites including Hull Prairie Intermediate School Sunshine Communities, PHS Alumni Association, Tent City, Kingston Assisted Living Residence, Toledo Metroparks, The Manor, the City of Perrysburg, Frank, Toth, Fort Meigs, and Woodland elementary schools, Northwest Ohio Food Bank, Toledo Area Humane Society, Fort Meigs Historical Site, PHS Athletics, and Bethany House.
Overall, the Jackets Giving Back volunteer day received positive feedback from the senior participants. One senior, Hunter Logan, who had volunteered at Hull Prairie Intermediate School, said, “It was a learning curve… the kids seemed to really benefit from our help. It seemed like we were positive role models. One of the kids even asked me to be his brother.”
Another senior, Erin Gardiner, also volunteered at Hull Prairie Intermediate School, said, “I think that the idea behind it was all really good. I feel like not only you were able to help yourself feel better, but you were also able to help other people make themselves feel worth it. So the idea was really nice, but I was at Hull Prairie and it seemed like a lot of the times the teachers didn’t need us as much help as volunteering would entail. A lot of the times we were just wandering the school, so it didn’t really feel like we were doing what we set out to do, but I think that people who maybe haven’t volunteered before got a lot out of it so I think it was worth it for them.”
Kelsey Bartalsky, another senior that volunteered at Side Cut Metropark said that “It was really fun. I got to plant grass seeds at Side Cut, and we just had a lot of fun.”
After the day was over, students filled out a survey in order for the school to adjust the volunteer day to better suit students that will participate in the future. Despite a few minor setbacks, the day was overall successful in showing students why volunteering matters.
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