CCEL Service Day

group of CWRU students participating in the CCEL service day event during discover week

The Center for Civic Engagement and Learning (CCEL) works to create an engaged campus by providing and supporting opportunities for community service and collective action while promoting civic awareness and leadership.

As part of Discover Week, students will have the opportunity to participate in the Center for Civic Engagement and Learning's annual CCEL Service Day. CCEL Service Day is a chance to get to know each other and the Cleveland community by volunteering at local nonprofits throughout the city.

You can choose from a variety of service projects or volunteer information sessions, including sorting donations at the Cleveland Food Bank, harvesting community garden crops and more.  A full list of project sites and descriptions is below:

Holden Forests & Gardens showcase their collection of plants that can grow in northeast Ohio, and allows visitors to see the variety of plants that they may want to grow themselves. Volunteers will assist our horticulture staff with gardening tasks in different gardens such as weeding, raking, mulching, deadheading, and transplanting. Holden Forests & Gardens uses non-chemical treatments in our display gardens, which means that a lot of hand weeding is required. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes (long pants are recommended) that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bugs pray, and a hat are also recommended. Closed-toed shoes will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate. Volunteers under 18 years old who register for this project, should contact erin.corwin@case.edu to receive a parent/guardian waiver in advance of the event.

Perfect for those who are ready to roll up their sleeves, volunteers at Highbrook Camp will engage in projects from cleaning to painting to weeding and repairing, or cabin preparation and the opportunity to work hard to keep the camp in great shape for campers and groups who use the space throughout the season. Closed-toed shoes will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes (long pants are recommended) that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate.

Volunteers will assist with bioretention and gardening maintenance at Greenwood Farm along the East Branch of Euclid Creek focused mostly on weeding of invasive and non native plants. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes (long pants are recommended) that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended. Closed-toed shoes will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate. Volunteers under 18 years old who register for this project, should contact erin.corwin@case.edu to receive a parent/guardian waiver in advance of the event.

Volunteers are needed to help sort and repack nonperishable food that is later distributed to local food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters. Volunteers may also be needed to assist in the Greater Cleveland Food Bank Kitchen with the preparation of hot meals and bagged lunches that are also distributed to partner programs. Closed-toed shoes are strictly required to participate in this project and volunteers are encouraged to wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes. Participants will be emailed a registration link in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate.

Volunteers will assist with hands-on projects outside to help preserve and conserve 20 acres of native habitats. Typical projects include habitat restoration and routine trail and parkland maintenance. This may involve pulling weeds and invasive plants, planting native plants, and raking. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bugspray, and a hat are also recommended. Closed-toed shoes and long pants will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate. Volunteers under 18 years old who register for this project, should contact erin.corwin@case.edu to receive a parent/guardian waiver in advance of the event.

Volunteer with assist North Union Farmers Market staff by organizing items for their annual fundraiser Cleveland Garlic Festival. Projects will include moving pop up canopies (10X10 tents), tables, chairs, etc. and loading them into a truck. The work will be predominantly outdoors and volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended.

Volunteers will help build a compost bin and with weeding, harvesting, watering and general garden work. Closed-toed shoes will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes (long pants are recommended) that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended. Students must be 18 or older on the day of the CCEL Service Day to participate in this project.

Volunteers will work to clear weeds from the outdoor classroom space, put down mulch and may also plant perennials in some areas. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended. Long pants will be strictly required in order to participate in the project and closed-toed shoes are recommended.

Shoes and Clothes for Kids (SC4K) is the only non-profit organization in Greater Cleveland providing new shoes, school uniforms, clothes and school supplies throughout the year at no charge to thousands of children in need. Through our programs, we help improve school attendance, in some cases up to 24%, so that our community's children have the education they need to succeed. Volunteers will sort and count inventory, stock shelves, and fill online uniform and supply requests. Volunteers are encouraged to bring a filled water bottle and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate. Volunteers under 18 years old who register for this project, should contact erin.corwin@case.edu to receive a parent/guardian waiver in advance of the event.

The Cleveland Cultural Gardens relies solely on volunteers to sustain this century old piece of history for all to enjoy. The projects may vary slightly from Garden to Garden such as raking, weeding, and planting. Water and snacks will be provided. Closed-toed shoes are recommended and volunteers should dress for the weather and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended.

Volunteers will sort, sticker and pack children's books in the warehouse. Thousands of high quality books are given each month to hundreds of organizations in our community who distribute them to the kids they work with. To date, we have distributed over 3 million books since opening our doors in 2016.  Some heavy lifting could be involved in moving packed boxes, and volunteers should be prepared to stand for the duration of the program. Volunteers will be taking public transit to the site, so you should plan to bring your student ID with a recent RTA sticker (U-Pass sticker) attached -- stickers can be picked up from your assigned area office. Students traveling to this site will be walking 0.75 miles round trip in order to get to and from the project location. Closed-toed shoes, comfortable work clothes (there is no air conditioning in the warehouse), and bringing a filled water bottle are recommended.

Founded in 1993, MedWish International is a not-for-profit organization that saves lives and the environment by repurposing discarded medical supplies and equipment to provide humanitarian aid in developing countries. Since they receive over 500,000 lbs. of supplies each year, it is crucial that they have volunteers assist their small staff in sorting and packaging these supplies. With the help of Medwish staff, volunteers will work together to sort the donated supplies into categories to prepare for shipment. Volunteers should wear comfortable work clothes and bring a filled water bottle. Closed-toed shoes will be strictly required in order to participate in the project. Some heavy lifting may be involved, and volunteers should be prepared to stand for the duration of the project. Volunteers will be taking public transit to the site, so you should plan to bring your student ID with a recent RTA sticker (U-Pass sticker) attached -- stickers can be picked up from your assigned area office. Students traveling to this site will be walking round trip 1 mile in order to get to and from the project location. Participants will be emailed a waiver in advance of the event that must be completed before they can participate. Volunteers under 18 years old who register for this project, must have their parent/guardian sign the waiver in order to participate.

Volunteers will help clean the back porches of one of the buildings and may assist with minor gardening of the front of the building such as weeding and pruning. Volunteers will be required to wear their masks for the duration of their volunteer period, should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes (long pants and closed-toed shoes are recommended) that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bug spray, and a hat are also recommended. Students must be 18 or older on the day of the CCEL Service Day to participate in this project.

Garden@Case is a CWRU volunteer-supported, on-campus garden used to educate in urban gardening practices and to provide food to a local hunger center. Volunteers will learn about how they can get involved and may assist with harvesting crops, weeding, planting, and watering. Volunteers should dress for the weather, bring a filled water bottle, and wear comfortable, work-appropriate clothes and sturdy, closed-toed shoes that they don't mind getting dirty. Sunscreen, bugspray, and a hat are also recommended. This project will take place on campus.

Project Sunshine is an organization whose mission is to bring joy and play to pediatric patients. Our events partner with University Hospitals and are a great way to make a difference in the experiences of these patients! This event will include volunteers packing activity kits that we would ship out to pediatric patients. Instructions will be explained and this is a great way to become introduced to healthcare service on campus! The project will take place on campus.

The Saturday Tutoring Program provides free tutoring to northeast Ohio youth in Grades 1st-12th on a variety of subjects. The tutoring takes place at the Church of the Covenant which shares space with the CWRU Campus. Join this session to learn more about how to become a tutor with the program. The session will take place on campus from 10 to 11 a.m.

SpartanTHON, is student organization on-campus that raises money for kids in University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital. Participants in this session will be making crafts and care packages for the kids and their families at the hospital, and the group will discuss how to get involved with them this year. This session will take place on campus.

Join this session to learn about how you can help alleviate health disparities in the Greater Cleveland community! Universal Health Aid of Cleveland is a non-profit organization that aims to promote a healthy lifestyle to those in the Cleveland community by providing medical resources to those in need, facilitating health education workshops, and promoting collaboration amongst like-minded organizations. This session will take place on campus.

Participants will be introduced to Habitat for Humanity through an introductory session to get acquainted with the CWRU chapter of the organization and all that they do from building houses nationally to fundraising for the community. Students will also get to do a small hands-on build which will provide something needed by new homeowners. The session will take place on campus.

Learn more about Camp Kesem, a week long free camp for kids whose parents have or have had cancer. Participants will make friendship bracelets, meet other student volunteers and learn how to get more involved this coming year! This session will take place on campus.

Did you know in 2018, CWRU students ages 18-21 had a voting rate of only 25.3%? This session will provide everything you need to know to vote in the upcoming 2020 election. We will provide an introduction to voter registration, voter education, and general information on political engagement. We’ll be discussing getting registered to vote, how to use TurboVote, different ways to vote, election information, and other political engagement opportunities. This session will take place on campus from 10 to 11 a.m.

Are you passionate about community service, but not sure how it will work as a new CWRU student? In this session, the staff of the Center for Civic Engagement & Learning (CCEL) will introduce you to our office and talk about how you can incorporate volunteerism into your life at CWRU! This session will take place on campus from 10 to 11 a.m.

Free Minds Book Club & Writing Workshop is a nonprofit based in Washington DC that “uses books, creative writing, and peer support to awaken DC youth incarcerated as adults to their own potential.” Volunteers in this project will spend time posting comments on Free Minds’ online poetry blog of works by incarcerated poets. The comments will then be shared with the poets to inspire them to continue their writing. The session will take place on campus from 10 to 11 a.m.

Kids Against Hunger is a non-profit humanitarian organization with a mission to provide fully nutritious food to impoverished children and families around the world. CWRU Kids Agains Hunger works closely with the Greater Cleveland Food Bank in order to provide food to those in the Cleveland area. At this session, participants will learn more about the group's monthly food bank trips, biannual packing events, and other ways to get involved! Also, brush up on your trivia knowledge to play a food insecurity themed Kahoot with prizes for the top 3 contestants! This session will take place on campus from 11 a.m. to noon.

The CWRUCio Quidditch Team and CWRU for Autism Acceptance are hosting a 5k Charity Run on September 5th 2021 for the Orange Effect Foundation, a charity dedicated towards ensuring children with speech disorders, autism, or those who are non-neurotypical receive the speech therapy and technology they need. Come learn more about volunteering at the event! You'll also learn more about the CWRU for Autism Acceptance student group and how to get involved throughout the year. This session will take place on campus from 10 to 11 a.m.

A blood drive will take place near campus from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. In addition to registering for CCEL Service Day via your Roadmap, you also need to make an appointment on the Red Cross website.

Zooniverse is an online platform for people-powered research, allowing researchers with large amounts of data to analyze their data more easily through the help of volunteers. If you’re a student who is interested in conducting research of your own in the future, or if you enjoy supporting research in areas you’re interested in, this opportunity is perfect for you. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 to 11 a.m.

Mapping Prejudice in an organization that helps to map racial covenants in the greater Minneapolis area that contributed to structural barriers by stopping many people who were not white from buying property and building wealth for most of the last century. Through mapping and reading property deeds, you can help to illuminate these disparities in order to help change our knowledge of the past and its current impacts. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 to 11 a.m.

LibriVox volunteers read and record chapters of books in the public domain (i.e. books no longer under copyright; primarily those published before 1923), and make them available for free on the Internet. Recordings (including yours!) will be donated into the public domain so that others may enjoy childhood classics in audio format. In this virtual group project students will be guided through creating these recorded readings together. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 to 11 a.m.

Volunteers for this project have the amazing opportunity to transcribe documents written by Rosa Parks, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony and more. Their work will allow these historical documents to be word searchable in the Library of Congress’ catalog. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 to 11 a.m.

Join student organization members and trainers from Missing Maps as they teach you to navigate OpenStreetMap, a collaborative mapping program that gets disaster relief where it's needed most. The project is an unprecedented collaboration between the American Red Cross, British Red Cross, Médecins Sans Frontières-UK (MSF-UK or Doctors Without Borders-UK) and the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) to map the world’s most vulnerable communities. Digital volunteer engagement is vital for the success of many humanitarian organizations around the world responding to disasters. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 a.m. to noon.

Global Medical Brigades (GMB) is an international network of university clubs and volunteer organizations that travel to developing countries on a brigade to perform health care in communities without access to medicine otherwise. The student group at CWRU will hold an information session via Zoom and will discuss healthcare distribution and accessibility in the US as well as in Honduras, the location of their partner community. The Zoom connection information for this session will be sent via email before the CCEL Service Day. This virtual session will take place from 10 a.m. to noon.