Judson students connect with community during Marion Matters
On Friday, September 8, Judson College students and community partners at 15 project sites participated in Judson’s 12th annual “Marion Matters”. This Perry County-wide community service initiative has been the first collective act of Judson’s campus community during each school year since 2005. Approximately 180 Judson students, faculty, and staff members participated in Marion Matters, which was coordinated by Judson’s Office of Faith-Based Service and Learning.
Judson volunteers worked on outdoor cleanup, maintenance, and beautification at the Marion Cemetery, the Perry County Public Library, the Marion walking trail, and along Highway 14. Volunteers installed Little Free Libraries on the walking trail and at the Centreville Street Berean Head Start. Many Judson groups worked with community partners at schools in Marion, from cleaning the grounds and gym at Marion Academy to cleaning and assisting with bulletin boards at Francis Marion School. Other Judson teams completed various projects at Sowing Seeds of Hope’s Job Training Center, and others visited and participated in activities with Perry County and Southland Nursing Home residents. Several Marion Military Institute cadets joined Judson students at the Marion courthouse square service site, where volunteers weeded and cleaned flower beds around Marion’s downtown center.
In addition to the coordination and completion of meaningful service projects in the community, Marion Matters teaches each new generation of Judson students the importance and effectiveness of working with each other and community partners to effect positive change wherever they’re “planted”. Amy Butler, Director of Faith-Based Service and Learning at Judson and coordinator of Marion Matters, cited Judson students’ “desire to be plugged in”, not only on campus, but also in Marion. “I really enjoy Marion Matters,” Butler said, “because it’s our new students’ first glimpse of Perry County and of some ways they can meaningfully engage with our neighbors. I’m looking forward to seeing students find their places of service in our community this year.”
Judson will continue with other service projects throughout the year, including a monthly “Weekend Recess” for children at Marion apartment complexes, and weekly tutoring through a partnership with Eagle Grove Baptist Church.
For more information about Marion Matters or Judson’s Faith-Based Service and Learning Program, contact Amy Butler at (334) 683-5163.