quinn2Next month, Project Stay students and staff will spend the day at Watered Gardens Rescue Mission helping to prepare and serve their annual Thanksgiving lunch.  The event is held each year at Watered Gardens and is expected to draw about 300 people on Tuesday, November 26.  Project Stay will be assisting with preparation, serving, and cleaning up after the meal.

As a part of the service project leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday, Project Stay will also be heading up a food drive in order to collect non-perishable items to donate to the Watered Gardens food pantry.  The students and staff of Project Stay would like to invite anyone on campus to join in the food drive effort.  Food donation boxes are located outside the Project Stay offices in Hearnes Hall room 308 and in several locations throughout Hearnes Hall.  Any non-perishable food items are welcome.

Watered Gardens is a local ministry that started in Joplin after a survey of an economically depressed area of the city revealed a vast number of needs among residents.  Since that time Watered Gardens has opened a 40-bed emergency overnight shelter and has begun providing many other services in the community including hygiene boxes, clothing, food baskets, and assistance with household furnishings and repairs.  More information about Watered Gardens can be found at http://wateredgardens.org

Each semester Project Stay students participate in a community service project around the Joplin area.  The Project Stay program, which is designed to assist first-generation, low-income, and/or disabled students, strives to get students involved in the campus as well as the community.  Community service projects are a part of the holistic approach used by Project Stay to increase student success.

“We are excited to be partnering with Watered Gardens for our community service project this semester.  Our students have big hearts and consistently show that through their enthusiasm for our service projects.  This is a great opportunity for our students and staff to do something together to give back to our community around the holidays.”

— by Dory Quinn, Project Stay Director
Missouri Southern State University