St. Catherine University students and alumnae/i, along with faculty and staff members, spent a Saturday morning serving nonprofit organizations on the annual Citizen Katie day, October 14. Nearly 300 volunteers met on campus for breakfast before heading out to work sites around the Twin Cities. In addition, five alumnae chapters participated through service projects in their own communities.
At Dress for Success Twin Cities, Citizen Katie volunteers sorted donated clothing, and helped clients with suiting appointments.
St. Kate’s has formed an ongoing relationship with the Food Shelf at HCMC (Hennepin County Medical Center), where Katie volunteers serve several times each year. The Food Shelf, which addresses hunger and food insecurity among patients and their families, distributes 600 bags each week through its clinics. Bags contain meal packs, canned goods, toiletries and other essential items.
At a Habitat for Humanity build site on the east side of St. Paul, Citizen Katie volunteers did indoor painting and built a retaining wall in the yard of a home on the east side of St. Paul. Volunteers at Coldwater Spring Park collected milkweed seeds.
Two on-campus activities served Empty Bowls and Days for Girls. The studio in the Visual Arts Building, volunteers created pottery pieces for Empty Bowls. The international project uses pottery to fight hunger. Volunteers for Days for Girls put together sustainable feminine hygiene kits for girls in developing countries.
Three Twin Cities metro area chapters hosted volunteer events at suburban nonprofit organizations. The East Metro Chapter served at Feed My Starving Children in Maplewood, packing 11,791 meals. For the third year, The South Metro Chapter met at The Lewis House in Eagan for a morning of outdoor clean up work. The West Metro Chapter volunteered at Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners in Plymouth, marking the fifth time St. Kate's has partnered with IOCP.
Other alumnae chapters participating in Citizen Katie were Chicago and Rochester.
Citizen Katie began as a student initiative in 2004. In 2012, the event expanded to include alumnae, faculty and staff. Citizen Katie is a joint effort between Community Work and Learning, Residence Life, Student Center and Activities and Alumnae Relations.