Community service reaps student benefit and experience


Esparanza Standing Bear

The Burrito Project distributes burritos made from donated food items to the homeless in Salt Lake City

Esparanza Standing Bear, Reporter

According to a study of the University of Nevada “Young people involved in community service are more likely to have a strong work ethic as an adult.” Volunteering can be helpful when it comes to decision making on a career choice. Volunteering in a field teens have a career interest in can help determine if they love the job or hate the job.

Giving back to communities can be one of the reasons young adults would like to volunteer. The community is always looking for a helping hand. Volunteering can also affect not only personal lives but school as well. The hours volunteered can count towards school credits. “If you are volunteering it has to be an organization with the community such as the city, library, hospital, or food bank. Every 45 hours equals a quarter credit,” explains Ms.Aldridge.  With work experience participants would need to be employed with a business that takes taxes out. The maximum credits eligible to receive is 4. Participants will need to fill out the proper form with attached proof of the completed the hours such as a pay stubs or a record.

Many have heard of the Burrito Project. There is one in downtown SLC ran by the owner Jorge Fierro. For those who are not familiar the Burrito Project, the routine is making as many burritos possible with the beans and rice that are given. Once the burritos are finished being made the next step is taking bikes or a car to search for homeless people in need of food. The Burrito Project is a group activity given the choice to attend with friends or family. Not only is the burrito project practiced in downtown SLC, it is a practiced in cities all around the world. There are no political, religious, or party views attached. They are always in need of volunteers and available weekly Mondays or Thursdays.

Senior Claudia Luna helped out with the Burrito Project in downtown SLC. Luna was able to make the burritos and deliver. She gave most of her burritos to the homeless sitting outside of The Road Home. She said it took approximately two hours. “It was fun and it made me feel good helping the people who don’t have things that other people do. I would recommend this to others. It really does make you feel good about yourself,” said Luna.

Big brothers Big Sisters is another organization students can volunteer for. It allows them to be a part of the community and have an positive impact for the future. The goal is to help youth gain more confidence, get along with peers, and reduce the chance to do drugs. “I like helping people including little kids because I know they are going to be the future and we need to be there for them,” said Cristian Gonzalez.

Gonzalez is a junior who has been a  volunteer at the Big Brothers Big Sisters program for about two years. Gonzalez attends the program each Monday after school until 3:30. “I help with homework, reading, and school projects. When we have free time we get to play sports,” says Cristian Gonzalez. Volunteers need to get registered and go through a series of questions to get started. “It is up to us to teach them good from bad because there are our future,” said Gonzalez.