The Bennion Center in the Olpin Student Union February 6, 2017. Michael Adam Fondren for the Daily Utah Chronicle.

For the past 15 years in September, hundreds of volunteers participate in Legacy of Lowell day of service. This year had one of the highest turnouts at 900 participants and 2,600 hours of service. Students and staff at the Bennion Center worked tirelessly to promote and help the event run smoothly. There were 29 events total, running from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

The students of the Bennion Center go through an extensive process to facilitate the event each year. Landon Clark, Student Chair, helped alongside with the staff chair and community partner chair to plan the whole event.

“We reach out to all of the projects we partnered with in the past and figure out how many volunteers they need,” said Clark. “Once they respond to us we start by finding students to be leaders of each project. We make sure that every student has a designated project to work with. They have a leader over them. I do meetings beforehand and coordinate so that everyone knows what they’re doing.”

The event ran smoothly, with one exception: “We had one location that didn’t have a community partner show up. We had to reassign 15 students to different projects,” Clark said.

Despite all of this, Clark was excited to have such a large turnout to The Day of Service. “This is the 15th annual project we’ve held. It’s in the top three of turnout we’ve had. We did a great job with marketing. It gets better every year.”

Bryan Luu, one of the five area coordinators worked hard to make sure the day went as planned. They acted as a method of support in case anything went wrong for the day.

“It was great to see people take time out of their day to dedicate it to service projects,” said Luu. “I really do appreciate the gathering of the community. We had 2,600 hours of service today, with all of the people giving three hours of their time to these causes.”

There were a variety of types of events for students to participate in ranging from making dog beds, knitting hats for newborns, creating quilts for refugees, sorting donations and planting trees. Some were held at the middle school, Glendale, and others in nearby parks and facilities. Morgan Byrne, a development officer at the Bennion Center said, “I love seeing so many enthusiastic students coming and learning how they can help the community.”

It isn’t too late to start volunteering with the Bennion Center. They have Saturday Service projects every month, and alternative breaks for fall and spring semesters. There’s a fall, spring, Earth Day and Martin Luther King service events as well. The Legacy of Lowell is their biggest project of the year. For more information, visit bennioncenter.org.

[email protected]

@Lderhak

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