Every year Volunteer UCF hosts its largest volunteer event, “Knights Give Back.” On October 3, over 1,200 students, alumni, faculty and staff served at more than 30 volunteer sites in the local area in an effort to give back to the community.
After a morning of fun in the arena, volunteers were transported to sites all over Orlando. One of the sites, Project Bithlo, had students partnering with United Global Outreach to enhance Transformation Village in an effort to uplift an under resourced community. Voessica Bonney, lunteers assisted with the vegetable and butterfly garden, painted a mural, and helped with the aquaponics system maintenance.
Rosen College and Hospitality Management campus students served at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, where they assisted with shelter upkeep, making mobiles for the cats to play with and associating with the shelter animals.
One of the most popular events was the on-campus “Abilities Field Day” hosted in partnership with the Autism Society of Greater Orlando. The event welcomed children with different abilities to experience all the fun of a field day in a safe, controlled environment where they can play with different sensory activities.
“Volunteering and making an impact on the children and their families was very rewarding, but I found that the educational aspect of the project was the biggest thing for us to take away,” said Jessica Bonney, UCF junior. The Chi Omega member went on to explain, “The entire VUCF staff did a great job of explaining the barrier between society and those who have Autism. We were challenged to break the social stigma within our own lives as well as within our community.”