Something very unusual happened near Life West on Friday, February 7th. For one thing, it was raining like crazy, and that almost never happens here in Hayward. Even more unusual – were the groups of Life West faculty, staff, administration and students – who could be found braving the elements as they took to the streets and volunteered a day to SERVE the local community.
Life West made a commitment to “Give Where You Live” and the impact of the project was more profound than anyone imagined.
Life West and the chiropractic profession are known for a commitment to service. Normally this service takes the form of a chiropractic adjustment – which is delivered in clinics, on trips and in community outreach projects. This day of service was different. The Give Where You Live project created an opportunity for our campus community to serve the larger community in which we live and work.
True service occurs when you do whatever is needed without any expectation of reward or acknowledgement. Service is when you extend your time, talent and focus to assist others, even when the tasks are unglamorous. And we were unglamorous that day!
A total of 256 people served by working at a variety of stations. We could be found at local food banks, picking up trash on the streets, cleaning and doing yard work in parks and community gathering areas. By the end of the day, we were wet and dirty and glowing with pride in a job well done!
This project had tremendous impact on the Hayward community, as we were able to complete tasks in just one day that would have taken local parks crews and street crews months to complete. We collected 160 bags of trash. We helped feed families who would not have access to healthy food without our help. We saved community resources. We made our community a safer place. More importantly, we let our community know that we care.
But the real impact happened for our own community. The Life West community got to experience the personal impact of selfless service. Our community loved the challenge of serving and giving from our collective place of abundance.
“Our team did a phenomenal job cleaning up the garbage on streets near the school. We found everything imaginable: cigarette butts, nuts & bolts, paper/plastic waste, broken glass, automobile fenders and broken orange safety cones!
All this trash was bagged for the City of Hayward to pick up. Thanks for the opportunity to serve our community. We persevered as a committed team and got the job done with no cares concerning the downpour, deep puddles and raging gutter rivers. In fact the downpour served to make this event even more of an adventure than previously pondered. Thanks again!”
Steve Waltner, Student
“I was so glad I got to be a part of this effort. Even when it began to rain harder, the students continued to clip, rake, spread bark/wood chips, and saw tree branches. They got wet and muddy but kept smiles on their faces! I am so proud of them!”
Nina Kempf, Staff
“It was incredible! The volunteering hours were meaningful and really empowering and inspiring. Sheila at the Alameda Food Bank drove home the purpose behind the project to us on a tour of the food bank. She shared with us how many families we were helping to feed with the produce in their distributions. We discovered that 1 out of every 6 people in Alameda County is served by this food bank! In fact, it is the mission of the Food Bank to put themselves out of jobs in the next 30 years – their mission is to end poverty. It was a really dynamic organization and I am grateful to have been connected to them. Thank you again for the inspiring opportunity! Rock on!”
Joie Mazor, Student
“What an opportunity to truly serve for those in need! The experience was profound and memorable for all involved. We found that many hands could help create a big difference. It was incredible to be of help and they are always willing to have more people come help.”
James Evans, Student Council President
When we Give Where We Live, we get to experience the best of our community and the best of ourselves. We hope you will join us for our next service day, no matter where you are!