The mission is simple: One Big Family, One Big Difference, One BIG Event. However, the impact is far greater than any person can express in print. The Big Event is a one-day student-run volunteer event that serves to thank Auburn and surrounding communities by giving back.
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Last year the Big Event had 2,400 students participate and were able to serve at 196 different job sites in Auburn and the surrounding communities. This year’s event will be held on March 24, 2012. The directors of the event hope to recruit more than 3,000 students and partner with more than 250 residences, schools and other organizations that need help.
The Big Event was started in 1982 on a college campus in Texas and was brought to Auburn’s campus in 2003. The event is designed to show the community that the students are thankful for providing a positive and supportive atmosphere to learn and live in. The group’s mission statement says, “In keeping with the spirit of the Auburn Family, the Big Event enables students to make a difference through selfless service to our ever-supportive community.”
Students wanting to volunteer for the event are encouraged to sign up in teams of 1 to 10 people. The teams help out in the community with schools, churches and at resident’s homes. The directors for Big Event work throughout the year to make this day of service as successful as possible. The directors and project coordinators work together to recruit volunteers, find jobsites and evaluate the number of volunteers each site needs to serve their particular need.
This year’s director, Kyla Wilkinson commented, “We have a team of more than 80 people who have been working tirelessly to ensure that this year’s event is the biggest every, but we can only reach this goal through the combined efforts of our students, faculty and community members.”
Some participants get the opportunity to work with residents of the community. Gabrielle Hoyt, a senior and student volunteer said, “Last year a group of pledge sisters and I worked on painting the chapel of the church. The pastor and church workers were so thankful, they even bought us lunch! What I thought was really cool was the church also sent their own group of Big Event volunteers out to help out someone besides themselves.”
The Big Event is unique in that the experience continues to impact everyone involved long after the day ends. When students take the time to help out the community, the community helps back. The event is more than just raking leaves or painting, the event is way to continue to help the community grow.
For more information visit aubigevent.com or contact Kyla Wilkinson at firstname.lastname@example.org