A fare share to give at CRC’s SHAREfair week

During SHAREfair week, students were asked to donate clothes, toys, books, food and other amenities at campus collection centers to help the less fortunate through the holidays.

Students were also invited to a showcase of non-profit businesses, social service providers and other philanthropic entities held at the cafeteria on Nov. 16.

Cosumnes River College hosted the annual SHAREfair, a celebration of philanthropy and local, non-profit enterprises from Nov. 12 to 16.

“The SHAREfair helps non-profits in many ways,” said Heather Hutcheson, an English professor who coordinated  the showcase, “It raises awareness to the resources that are offered in the community. Another way that it helps is that it focuses on giving students an opportunity to volunteer for these non-profits.”

The showcase provided information on services available near CRC and demonstrated  how students can give back to their communities through volunteer programs and charities.

“Over the past three days, students can have expected to be exposed to over 20 different non-profits that offer a variety of ways that they can get involved,” Hutcheson said. “We have a huge variety of ways they can get involved.”

In all, 26 non-profits and other establishments were represented at the SHAREair, such as Planned Parenthood Mar Monte, Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary and the Salvation Army, among others.

SHAREfair offered numerous opportunities for people to give back to their communities, from reading books to children at the local public library to donating scarves to keep somebody warm through the winter.

Students who wish to get involved could have signed up at many of the booths at the non-profit showcase, or referred to the directory handed out at SHAREfair to sign up later. It’s not too late for those that may have missed the SHAREfair, however.

Students can still volunteer online with websites such as www.volunteermatch.org that allow users to search and and volunteer for a non-profit that suits them.

SHAREfair was also an opportunity for non-profits to share their services with the students of CRC.

“We share information because there’s a lot of people who are looking for the help we can give them,” said William Singleton, a team leader for the Center for Fathers and Families. “Almost all of our fliers are already gone.”

In many cases, students were unaware of the services that the non-profits at the showcase provide, or of the numerous volunteering opportunities that the establishments offer until the SHAREfair.

“It gives me the opportunity to come out and tell people about the public library, because there’s a lot of people that don’t know what the public library can do for them,” said Cathy Crosthwaite, a volunteer services coordinator for the Sacramento public library. “For instance, a lot of college students have children that are in elementary school, and they don’t even know that we have entire libraries and a database that they can use for free.”