The one-time opportunities listed below are primarily sponsored by community agencies. Some opportunities are co-sponsored by the Volunteer and Community Service Center such as Saturdays of Service (S.O.S.), Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, and our Social Justice Series. Additional information on the Social Justice Series can be found after the listing below.
Social Justice Series
What is Social Justice?
Defining the term social justice is harder than you may think. There really is not one set definition that encompasses everything that falls into the social justice category. It is often thought of as term that is used when defending human rights or wanting to change laws. It can sometimes be used as an educational tool to help others become aware of issues around them. Most of all social justice is a word that umbrellas and shelters many issues concerning people. It is not only a term, but an idea, belief, or view of life. Social justice issues can range from educational reform to environmental sustainability therefore reaching out to people from various backgrounds and experiencing. As a whole, social justice is something that concerns and should concern everyone.
Why is it important?
Social Justice is extremely important, especially in our rapidly changing world. As we make our way through 2013 there are still many families who do not have homes, women who are being denied basic human rights, children who are not receiving the education they deserve and so many people unaware of the issues that occur right in their own neighborhood. Social Justice is the stepping stool to creating awareness, education, and doing something about these issues. Social justice brings to light these issues and creates an environment of opportunity for everyone to get involved and help make a change.
How can we help?
At Lawrence we pride ourselves in all and what we can do. As members of the Appleton community we should think of the many opportunities we have to get involved. There are community gardens, schools, homeless shelters, and many more places were someone can lend a helping hand. There is so much that Appleton has to offer Lawrence and so much Lawrence has to offer Appleton. Think about what interests you, what you are passionate about, what you want to learn, and go and do something about it. There is a need for social justice every day! Whether it is through volunteering with a local organization, advocating for changes in legislation, or even just by having discussions about an issue of concern, you can be an advocate for change and social justice.
(For more information about social justice related volunteer opportunities, contact Jaime F. Gonzalez)
The Social Justice Series began in Spring of 2009 in hopes of promoting the education of Lawrence students on contemporary matters of social justice. Periodical presentations cover a wide variety of social issues. Past events include:
Vandana Shiva Service Trip
Lawrentians volunteered their spring reading periods to promote sustainable agriculture in Milwaukee. Students volunteered at Growing Power, an enormous organic urban farm that combats food insecurity through organic farming, community outreach, and education; Sweetwater Organics, a new business that combines the growth of organic greens with organic fish in a multi layered aquaponics system; and Hawley Environmental School, an elementary charter school promoting environmentalism in its students. Throughout the trip, students learned about the issues they were addressing through a series of readings, discussions, and visitors. The trip culminated in attending a lecture given at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee by Vandana Shiva, renowned Indian environmental activist.
Oxfam Hunger Banquet
Students were separated into three different income levels and learned about the unequal distribution of food worldwide. Then, students learned about hunger in the Fox Cities from two speakers from the Community Garden Partnership and the Salvation Army. The event closed with a discussion between the speakers and the students about local issues of hunger.