April Action Day 2010

University of San Francisco Announces Collaboration with Nonprofits for a Day of Service

SAN FRANCISCO–April 8, 2010

The University of San Francisco, in collaboration with a variety of nonprofit organizations, has announced a series of local service opportunities to coincide with the student led program, April Action. Two consecutive weekends, April 17 (the Pacific Northwest and Southern California regions) and April 24 (the Sacramento, Silicon Valley and San Francisco regions), mark the 2010 April Action Day. With five regions that span the west coast, these two days will reunite USF alumni, current USF participants, and local nonprofit organizations to give back to their communities.

The University Ministry's community action program collaborates with a variety of other Bay Area non-profit agencies to provide students with opportunities to serve in their local community. Through these programs, USF students honor the Jesuit ideals of being both men and women for others, and contemplatives in action. Students witness the daily struggle of people living on the margins of society and are encouraged to ask questions in order to better understand the systemic issues and reasons for such suffering.

“Our goal is to have students, alumni and friends of the University be engaged in the process, not just devote an hour or two of volunteer time,” said Rev. Donald Godfrey, S.J., Director of University Ministry at USF. Fr. Godfrey continued, “We say that it’s not enough to understand, but we must also act on that understanding. And conversely, it’s not appropriate to act, without first developing an understanding of these issues facing our community.”

With service as the main goal, April Action Day expands the program to members of the USF Regional Councils, comprised of alumni chapters located throughout five western regions: Pacific Northwest, Southern California, Sacramento, Silicon Valley and San Francisco. USF alumni, parents and friends in each of the regions are invited to join the Regional Councils for these service projects.

  • Pacific Northwest - Seattle: On April 17, from 10 – 2 pm, the Pacific Northwest Regional Council will partner with People for Puget Sound on Earth Day to help restore and preserve the Duwamish River, located just south of Seattle in the town of Tukwila. People for Puget Sound, a citizens group founded to protect and restore the health of the Earth through education and action, along with more than 30 conservation groups and hundreds of volunteers will work alongside USF alumni-- planting native shrubs and trees, mulching, pulling weeds, and more.
  • Southern California – Los Angeles: Also on April 17, from 9 – 4 pm, the Southern California Region Council will partner with St. Robert’s Center, a special services organization of Catholic Charities of Los Angeles, serving homeless and low-income families and individuals. USF volunteers will prepare sandwiches, serve lunch and assemble personal hygiene kits for the Center’s clients located in Los Angeles’ Venice neighborhood.

April 24 marks April Action Day for Sacramento, Silicon Valley, and San Francisco.

  • Sacramento: In Sacramento, from 10 – 3 pm, USF volunteers will partner with Cristo Rey High School to help with grounds maintenance, landscaping and beautification of the Cristo Rey campus in preparation for the school’s annual scholarship dinner in May. Cristo Ray High School opened in 2006 and is sponsored by the Society of Jesus, the Sisters of Mercy and the Sister of Notre Dame de Namur.
  • Silicon Valley – Menlo Park: The Silicon Valley Council will work from 8 – 1 pm in partnership with St. Anthony’s Padua Dining Room, a volunteer-run soup kitchen serving up to 600 hot meals a day to low income, elderly and homeless families and individuals. USF volunteers will assist with dining room set-up, meal preparation and food service at the dining room, located in Menlo Park.
  • San Francisco: The SF council will partner with USF’s University Ministry, who is teaming up with Urban Sprouts, an organization that cultivates gardens in under-served areas of the city, to plant a garden at Ida B. Wells School in San Francisco, located in the Alamo Square neighborhood. USF alumni are invited to join students, University Ministry and the San Francisco Regional Council for a 7:30 a.m. breakfast on campus before leaving for their work site. Participants will work from 9:30 – 2 pm.

April Action Day is not just intended to help serve suffering communities, but also to unite the extensive USF network. These two days offer the opportunity of bringing together people from different backgrounds to work as one toward the goals of cultivating compassion, restoring our environment, serving others, and helping those in need.

For specific questions about the details in each region, please contact Jenna Bent at 415-422-6441 or send an email to usfevents@usfca.edu.

About the University of San Francisco

Established in 1855, USF is the city’s oldest university and is consistently ranked as one of the most ethnically diverse universities in the country. The University of San Francisco is committed to being a premier Jesuit Catholic, urban university with a global perspective that educates leaders who will fashion a more humane and just world. With nearly 8,800 enrolled, the university offers undergraduate, graduate, and professional students the knowledge and skills needed to succeed as persons and professionals, and the values and sensitivity necessary to be men and women for others. For more information, please visit www.usfca.edu.