The current worldwide pandemic has impacted us all in one way or another. Loss of wages or a job, lack of food and even homelessness have happened to many including those in our area. Central Ohio Technical College’s (COTC) chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), Alpha Theta Zeta, members decided to do their part to help build and support the community.
The group conducted a fundraiser called “Spread the Love” from February 8 to 26 to collect and donate necessary items to the Newark Homeless Outreach Program.
“A little goes a long way, the things we overlook or have easy access to can be such a blessing to another person. Ask yourself how helpful a toothbrush would be if you’d been without one,” said Chido Muchemwa, COTC PTK vice president of services.
The members worked with Patricia Perry, addiction advocate and co-founder of the Newark Homeless Outreach Program, who is also an alumna of COTC and PTK member. They reached out to family, friends, other COTC student groups and the public to seek items such as gloves, socks, toiletries, wash cloths, feminine hygiene products, disposable cutlery packets, cotton swabs and closeable plastic bags.
They collected over 2,000 items, despite having to digitally complete the campaign, and delivered them to Perry on March 12.
“We learned that regardless of the situation there are individuals with greater needs than our own,” said Donna Strosnider, COTC PTK president. “The pandemic and social distancing doesn’t mean we can’t make a difference; we are making a difference using different ways and means.”
Caption: Reina Arey, COTC PTK public relations officer, helping sort out donated items in the COTC Student Life Office.
COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs. COTC has four campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.