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Rake Across DeKalb event needs project sites

September 30, 2011

Photo of an NIU student raking during NIU Cares DayStudent Involvement & Leadership Development (SILD) is in search of project sites for its annual Rake Across DeKalb event.

This event sends volunteers from the NIU community (students, faculty and staff) into the community to assist area residents and non-profit organizations with lawn clean-up in preparation for winter. Participation is free for both volunteers and those wishing to be added to the list of project sites.

This service opportunity allows NIU students the ability to give back to the local DeKalb community as well engage with local residents.

Although this event is relatively new, it has received great participation rate from students interested in getting involved through community service.

SILD offers a similar service event in the spring called NIU Cares Day. It is shares the same mission of allowing the NIU community the opportunity to give back to the larger local community. Rake Across DeKalb hopes to help local residents who are unable to keep up with the increased lawn care needed in the fall to prepare for the winter months.

“This event stemmed from the interest of students who have been heavily involved with our spring NIU Cares Day event,” says Becky Harlow, assistant director for Community Service and coordinator of the event. “NIU students are always looking for ways to interact with the residents of DeKalb County and to lend a hand to those in need. We think this event is a great example of our students’ interest in taking care of their community.”

Because of logistical factors, including transportation and the event timeline, those sites in DeKalb and Sycamore will be given first priority. Residents are expected to provide at least one rake per volunteer requested. Note that campus initiatives that organize campus volunteers (mainly students) to perform a variety of service projects throughout the greater DeKalb community will not have project sites that are private property of NIU faculty, staff or students.

SILD is also looking for donations of rakes, gloves and/or large leaf bags to aid residents and organizations who cannot provide rakes for the number of volunteers needed. Any donations are appreciated to help make this program possible.

This year’s event is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29. Individuals and non-profit organizations can register for the event by completing the online registration form and submitting it via mail, e-mail or fax. Registration will be accepted until Friday, Oct. 21.

For more information, call (815) 753-6703 or email [email protected].