BY Anaya Vance
With the fall season in full swing and Thanksgiving creeping up on us after Halloween, members of Student Government begin to celebrate the spirit of charity. Every year, SHU’s Turkey Drive is sponsored by Student Government, led by this year’s Student President, Sarah Kosha, Vice President for Senate, Eve Papa, Vice President for Finance, Kaitlyn Todaro and other members from the Executive Board.
“This event has been very successful over the last eight years. We have been able to feed over 4,760 families in the local area overall. Student Government has always been able to reach the goal that we set with the amazing support that our University shows towards the Turkey Drive. Being able to give back to the local community through the Turkey Drive, truly moves us forward as a community, and over the last eight years we have been able to work towards just that,” said Kosha.
Last year, Student Government’s Turkey Drive distributed 700 turkeys from Stop & Shop and Shop Rite to local families in need and raised $12,000 through fundraising. Students from the University assisted Student Government in the distribution of turkeys on Nov. 21, 2017 at St. Charles Borromeo Parish Roman Catholic Church and Blessed Sacrament Roman Catholic Church. Both parishes are located in Bridgeport.
Members of the men’s basketball, lacrosse, and wrestling teams accompanied Student Government along with members of CrossFit and Volunteer Programs & Service Learning. “It was an eye-opening experience for me because for myself I’ve never been a part of something like that and I was surprised on how many people were there to help and how many people needed help for Thanksgiving,” said Sophomore Alex Watson.
Members of Sacred Heart’s football team also contributed to the Turkey Drive by collecting non-perishable canned food items. “In the past years, as a team, the guys and I had a very good outcome in bringing in lots of canned goods to contribute to the drive,” said Junior Denzel Williams.
SHU Dining was also there and took part of the community outreach by providing hot chocolate from The Kitchen truck.
Student Government receives donations from students, families and alumni of Sacred Heart. They also have an incredible online platform, and in 2014 was their biggest source of income.
As VP of Finance for Student Government it is Todaro’s job to oversee the financial accounts and budgets for all the clubs and organizations on campus, including the Turkey Drive.
“Once the money is deposited and/or received from our online site, I can make a receipt from student life. From that, I deposit the money into the Turkey Drive account. We obtain quotes for 700 turkeys from Stop and Shop and Shop Rite. When the order is placed, we use all of the donated money that we have received and pay for these turkeys,” said Todaro.
This year the annual Turkey Drive will be on Tuesday Nov. 20. Student Government’s goal is to raise $12,000, purchase 700 turkeys, and feed just as many families as they did last year.
Students who are not directly part of Student Government can get involved this fall by donating online at www.sacredheart.edu/turkeydrive, stopping by their table times, and going to the fundraisers at Chipotle, Panera and more. Their table times are outside of Outtakes/63’s on Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.