St. Edward's University Students Reach Out to help the Homeless
Twelve St. Edward’s University students are gearing up for the Second Annual Reach Out Homeless Resource Fair on Saturday, April 2 from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. at St. Ignatius Martyr Catholic Church, 126 W. Oltorf St.
“Reach Out” stands for Responding Effectively Against Community Homelessness through Outreach, Understanding and Transformation. The fair is being hosted by Hilltop Leadership Development in conjunction with St. Ignatius Martyr Parish and Mobile Loaves and Fishes.
Last year, St. Edward’s students who attended the Homeless Resource Fair saw more than 150 homeless receive everything from a warm meal, shower, and a care package to something as simple as a conversation that could have potentially changed their outlook on life. The fair was organized by Hilltop Leadership as a way for students to turn leadership skills into action by means of a community service project.
This year, over 9 months of planning have taken place for the upcoming Reach Out Homeless Resource Fair on April 2 which will not only provide services to the homeless but educate the campus community on the homeless population in Austin and what can be done to help.
St. Edward’s University students Christine Lucht, English ’12, and Matt Wolski, Bioinformatics ’13, are both involved in the campus’ Reach Out Program. Both students first got involved though Hilltop Leadership last year. Christine believes that helping the homeless is a perfect way for students to branch out and have the opportunity to help and understand a population of people that are underestimated and dismissed by most. Matt oversaw the students who created this year’s fair in order to continue the mission of Reach Out and to provide to the homeless of Austin.
The Homeless Resource Fair will kick off with two education days:
- Tuesday, March 29—12 Austin area organizations, as well as Campus Ministry and Social Justice and Service Outreach organizations, will offer students ways to volunteer and get involved. The event will be held from 11 a.m.–2 p.m. in Mabee Ballroom C, Robert and Pearle Ragsdale Center.
- Wednesday, March 30—Carlos Hamilton, a formerly homeless man from New York, will give his story and offer insight into how his life was affected by his time living on the streets. The event will be held at 7 p.m. in Mabee Ballroom B, Robert and Pearle Ragsdale Center.
At this year’s Reach Out Homeless Resource Fair on April 2, Reach Out expects to serve between 300-500 of Austin’s homeless and offer them a day filled with common luxuries that we often take for granted. Services provided will include showers, haircuts, backpacks, bus passes, massages, foot baths, a hot meal and clothing.
– Christine Lucht and Matt Wolski