During the 2012-2013 calender year, Project Politae made partnerships with six organizations namely St.Elizabeth Shelter, Habitat for Humanity, Heart and Soul Animal Sanctuary, Monte Del Sol Charter School, Santa Fe Children’s Museum, and Santa Fe Kitchen Soup Services. This gave the students a lot of opportunities to explore in the community. A lot of students were really engaged and interested especially with the Heart and Soul Animal Sanctuary projects where they went to the animal sanctuary for close to ten times to hang out with the abandoned animals that are rehabilitated there. It was fun to socialize the dogs, clean up for the cats and the chickens among many other exciting activities. It really gave the students some good recreation to just chill and forget about their homework, and have a chance to share their love for the animals.
Project Politae also helped significantly at the St. Elizabeth Shelter for the Homeless. Students went there closely every fort night and helped cleaning the house, and sorting out food and clothes donations. This made the place very tidy and organized.
Politarians as they are popularly known also embarked on a massive campaign to feed the hungry and the homeless in the city. The project was pioneered by Miss. Alicia Dondo a graduating senior at the college. She invited food and money donations from willing students, purchased and prepared food for the needy. A group of students then delivered the food to the needy in the city at the Interfaith community shelter. The project became very popular in the city and made a great difference.
Every Wednesday, a group of students went to tutor high school kids at the Monte Del So Charter School. These were students largely from 7th to 12th grade. They benefited quite well from the close attention of the St. John’s tutors. Usually they came with their homework, after class whilst their parents waited for them.
Most of the kids had challenges with Math and the tutors were very good at tackling the problems of the students in to the best of their abilities and in ways that the students would really understand and appreciate.
Behind the scenes the Project Politae coordinator and the supervisor embarked on an awareness campaign where they met with college officials, the president, his deputy, the dean and the assistant dean, notifying them about the work that the organization was doing and what the goals of the organization were in the coming years. This campaign was also made possible by a prior student survey that produced results on the general feeling about community service at St. John’s College in Santa Fe. The awareness campaign also made it possible for the Project Politae leadership to discuss ways that the organization might improve its service and its operations. Among other resolutions reached was the need to motivate, honor and incentivise illustrious and outstanding volunteers. The leadership also sought ideas on how to achieve the 1000 hour annual goal, and relevant recommendations were made.
Project Politae also held board meetings, to discuss the progress of the organization and find ways of improving its reach. We also discussed the progress we were making in all our meetings and made further recommendations on how best to motivate the students to participate in community service. To improve our brand and honor illustrious volunteers we held a reception at the college president’s residence and had an award ceremony. The most illustrious volunteers were honored and all volunteers received the then launched Project Politae T-shirt.
We intent to do more, to strengthen the brand, and attract more volunteers in the years to come.