Volunteer Spotlight: Michelle Khawam

In her first year at the Marist Campus Ministry, Michelle Khawam has led countless community projects and even built a greenhouse at a community center in Marida, Mexico. Michelle, after finishing her Masters Degree in Theology, and joining the Campus Ministry, can barely contain her excitement over her community involvement! “I love a new challenge and I have the chance to give students the opportunity to be of service.”

Besides leading faith sessions, retreats, and international missions, Michelle has organized a clothing and sneaker drive, implemented a food drive and supported weekly service projects.  During the weekly service projects, students go out into the community and tutor students or brighten a senior’s day.  She works with nearly 600 students who regularly make a difference in the Poughkeepsie community.
Marist Campus Ministry students collected much needed hygiene items to go to an organization serving the homeless population for National Volunteer Week. This year Mental Health America of Dutchess County was the beneficiary. The students collected over 500 water bottles, razors, shampoo, soaps and washcloths to help out those facing homelessness right here in our local community.
The Mental Health Association was extremely grateful, said Program Manager, Vernae Johnson “Our clients have nothing, if no one donates these crucial items, they may have to shower without basics- even soap.”
Michelle was fortunate to have the entire campus behind her. She promoted the drive on social media and placed boxes in all of the residence halls. “The turnout and hard work that the students put into making this drive a success was truly incredible!”
Michelle is already planning the 3rd Annual Marist Campus Ministry Hygiene Kit Supply Drive that will take place in April of 2016. “Next year I think we can collect even more of these crucial items that will help our neighbors- I can’t wait!”
To learn more about volunteering in our community, visit volunteer.uwdor.org.
-Melissa Clark, Manager of Community Mobilization