March 1, 2023
Story and photo by Joe Vinduska
Volunteers in Action (VIA) member Susan Bauer spends a couple hours of her Friday afternoons at Barton Community College’s Cougar Supply Den helping students make sure they have everything they need, from food to personal hygiene items and bedding.
“I feel all students and youth should have the opportunity to have a healthy diet and access to food,” she said. “It is more difficult out here since students, especially international students, don't have cars, and they can't always get into town to get food on their own when they need it or they need a meal between what is covered on their meal plans. I know sometimes transportation is provided into town, but this probably is much more convenient. I just like to give back to the community that I’ve been a part of for 40 years. I particularly have an interest in youth and young adults, and I thought this was a good way to help with their needs.”
VIA and the AmeriCorps Seniors Program (formerly RSVP) are volunteer service organizations sponsored and supported by Barton Community College. The college provides office space, equipment, IT assistance, fiscal oversight, and helps with other needs.
VIA and AmeriCorps Director Linn Hogg said between the two organizations, there are numerous volunteer opportunities available that can appeal to anyone’s strengths.
“We have so many ways that people can share their time and skills,” she said. “We need volunteers for a lot of different things such as meals on wheels drivers, medical transportation, shopping helpers, some clerical work, and other things as well. We have volunteers that help with community projects and city-wide cleanup types of events. There’s always a way for somebody to help.”
Hogg said that they recently launched a new website to help people stay up to date on and sign up for volunteer opportunities.
“This site is so easy to use and user-friendly,” she said. “We have volunteers that prefer to sign up using other methods, but we wanted to be sure and accommodate potential volunteers that would be receptive to something based online as well.”
For more information, contact Hogg at firstname.lastname@example.org or (620) 786-7558 and visit https://volunteersinaction.galaxydigital.com to read about volunteer opportunities.