By Devin Orsini
The School of Business is collecting donations for Ottawa Innercity Ministries, an organization which focuses on providing for people who are homeless and live in poverty.
The school is collecting items from hats to backpacks to sleeping bags and gift cards, with a full list of acceptable items on the college website.
“This is something I’ve had a heart for, for a long time,” said Shirley Haug, business computer applications co-ordinator.
Haug has partnered up with the school to make a team effort in bringing in as many donations as possible and to make sure the cause goes college wide.
“OIM is a great institution, who provides for who needs it,” said Haug.
Besides the school, Haug is the only member of staff offering her time towards collecting donations, marketing and advertising. She has pitched the cause through MyAlgonquin, and has contacted the Students’ Association and CKDJ 107.9 FM radio to help with promotion. Haug has seen very positive feedback from all her efforts.
This is the first year Algonquin has participated in collecting donations for OIM. It started on Feb. 24 and ends on March 25. The college has already donated several items.
“I’ve gotten some response, but I’m optimistic we’ll get more,” said Haug.
This is not the first time Algonquin has participated in helping the homeless. For several years, Cindy Versteeg has arranged for students in the bachelor of science and nursing program to offer their time to OIM to assess and collect data on the homeless condition who then collaborates with OIM to help them the best they can.
“It’s definitely a success. The students do amazing work,” said Versteeg a professor and registered nurse.
She is hoping to send several students to OIM this fall to build a relationship with the homeless and aid in any way they can.
“It’s natural as nurses that we would do these community based projects, it’s just who we are,” said Versteeg.
Haug has seen interest from several students in volunteering their time to make posters and to set up tables so as to get the word out.
Those involved hope to do it next year and to make it an annual event here at the college. The president of the college wants Algonquin to be a part of the community.
“If we do it again next year, I think we will start it a little earlier to avoid winter. You do it once, and the next year is more precise,” said Haug.