Every Wednesday, the senior parking lot jumps to life as the seniors hop into their cars and travel near and far to commit acts of selflessness. The students venture off to several service sites to assist, serve and support several separate communities within our own.
One service site in particular attracted a multitude of the Class of 2017’s members. Roughly 10% percent of the seniors decided to volunteer to help teach literacy, among other things, to underprivileged children living in the Dallas area.
Commit! To Dallas is a partnership that gives those who are blessed an opportunity to give back and teach underprivileged people in the Dallas community. Among other things, the program deals with educating its participants in reading and writing. The Commit! to Dallas program encompasses a large diversity of age groups including: children in early childhood, which is comprised of children between kindergarten age and 3rd grade; youth during their middle years, which encompasses students from 4th to 12th grade; and adults in their post-secondary education level.
The Jesuit seniors who do volunteer work with Commit! travel to elementary schools in the Dallas area, like Jerry R. Jenkins Elementary. At the schools, the volunteering seniors have one-on-one sessions with students in need of assistance. According to senior J.T. Mix, during each session the seniors and students will either read off words from a list, read books or play games that help improve the child’s ability to read and spell.
One senior in particular, James Vroom, enjoys volunteering with Commit! because he knows that his work could potentially have an extremely positive effect on a child’s life. James’ favorite part about serving, ironically, is saying goodbye: “Every Wednesday when I tell the kids I have to leave, they all ask me to stay and give me a hug and thank me.” With heartwarming experiences like these, James delights in knowing that he’s making an impact. Mix, another senior volunteering with Commit!, also enjoys working with the kids, and looks forward to spending time with them because “they’re always exited and smiling.”
Commit!, being one of several potentially rewarding senior service sites, gives our seniors a chance to impact the lives of others who are less fortunate than they are. Truly, they are making a difference in the community.