Harker DECA and Red Cross Co-Sponsored Community Service Event

On November 6, 2013, Harker DECA (San Jose, Calif.) and Red Cross hosted a community service event where students were able to prepare disaster kits with every day items.

Leading the event were Shannon Hong, director of public relations for Harker DECA, and Nitya Mani, vice president of Harker Red Cross.

In accordance with the community-oriented pillar of DECA, Harker DECA organized this event so students could use easily accessible resources to create disaster kits for those in need of these items. This type of community involvement is crucial to building a foundation for community-oriented entrepreneurs.

In preparation for the event, Red Cross and Harker DECA gathered nearly five hundred Band-Aids, four hundred AA batteries, two hundred granola bars and one hundred toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes and hand sanitizers for the disaster kits.

The officers set up the event outside of the lunch area, ready to build hundreds of packs. The turn out was excellent; nearly thirty students came out to help and each student was able to put together three packs.  

“It was a fun event and I felt like I was really helping the community – that felt great,” said Noa Sasson, a freshman at The Harker School.

This community service project came at a much-needed time as well.

“Just recently, the HaiYan typhoon hit the Philippines and left the area in ruins with nearly 800,000 people displaced,” said Hong. “These supplies that we’re making could potentially be shipped overseas to places like the Philippines. It’s great to know that we’re actually making a difference in people’s lives.”

Overall the event was not only a beneficial project for the local and extended community, but also helped form an important partnership between Harker DECA and the Red Cross.

“The partnership between DECA and the Red Cross was highly successful and educational. The Red Cross strives not only to complete service projects but also to educate the larger community, and our partnership with DECA allowed us to reach a group of amazing individuals we might not have touched,” said Mani. “I think that I speak not only for the Harker Red Cross Club, but also for the Silicon Valley Chapter and the Red Cross as a whole when I say that this project made a difference and that the kits we made might even end up saving lives.”

Follow Shannon on Twitter @shannonyhong and Harker DECA on Instagram @harkerdeca

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