This Week in Service
Department of Community Service
Th e Week of March 30
A Note from the Department of Community Service -

We are looking forward to continuing to provide virtual service opportunities and other community engagement for the Brandeis community! Keep an eye out for department-specific programs like home office tours, reflections, virtual volunteering, asking questions of the department, etc.

Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to keep up with all the available opportunities and programs we are sharing!

Are you hosting virtual programs? Fill out this form to let us know!
In this email:

  1. DCS Spirit Week!
  2. Become a Virtual Companion with Companion to Elders
  3. Writing Letters to the Elderly!
  4. Brunch with The DCS Bunch
  5. Story Time! Reflections on Service with DCS
  6. Commitment to Service Award & Virtual Volunteering Update!
  7. Important Commitment to Service Award Medal Update for Seniors!
  8. DCS Virtual Volunteer Challenge!
  9. Virtual Volunteer Challenge Week 1: Beautify your Community 
Brandeis Community Opportunities
DCS Spirit Week!
The Department of Community Service is hosting our first ever virtual Spirit Week starting today, Monday, March 30th through Friday, April 3rd! In the spirit of spreading kindness and boosting morale in our communities, we encourage our service leaders and volunteers to share this virtual challenge with any elder companions, littles, tutees, neighbors, friends, family members, or simply someone in your community who could use some spirit. All are invited to participate and dress up. 

We also encourage you to tag deis_dcs on instagram, or send pictures to the Community Service Specialist Colby Sim so we can help spread joy and spirit to everyone in our communities.
Become a Virtual Companion with Companions to Elders!
Waltham Group's Companions to Elders is looking for eager volunteers to pair with senior residents at Francis Cabot Lowell Mill, one of our partner Senior Centers in Waltham, to stay connected through either email, phone or FaceTime. If you choose to become a "virtual companion," the time you spend being in contact with the residents can still be logged on to SAGE to count towards commitment to service. The times that you choose to stay connected with your companion is completely up to you and your schedule. This is a great opportunity to show your support and solidarity with the elderly at Francis Cabot.

If you are interested in becoming a "virtual companion" or have any questions, please email  Companions2Elders .
Writing Letters to the Elderly!
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As we get used to this new virtual life, there are some elderly in our neighbourhood who do not have access to the internet. As we transition into this period of social isolation, join Jewish Family and Children's Services (JF&CS) and Companions to Elders (C2E) to write letters to the elderly! A representative from JF&CS will be collecting and distributing letters to some of our elderly friends to remind them that we’re thinking about them! 

Please email Companions2Elders f or guidelines.
Brunch with The DCS Bunch
The Department of Community Service (DCS) will be hosting  BRUNCH WITH THE DCS BUNCH  every  Wednesday in April and May from 12:00-1:00PM EST  via Zoom. We miss seeing you all around campus and are looking to create a casual space to be in community together over something that unites us all...food!

 There will be no set agenda, but an opportunity to share updates, ask questions and chat about life over breakfast, lunch or dinner based on your timezone.  Whether you are on campus, at home, or abroad, we also invite you to share your best food stories, such as food you grew up on, a favorite dish you like to make, or foods that bring you joy.  Pop in for 5 minutes or stay for a full meal. 

All are welcome, and no RSVP is required. You can join us on zoom through  this link .  If you have questions, please email the Director of Community Service, Lucas Malo at  lmalo@brandeis.edu .
Story Time! Reflections on Service with DCS
Calling all volunteers! The Department of Community Service invites you to join in community with fellow volunteers and service leaders to virtually reunite and reflect on our community engagement work this spring on  Thursday, April 2nd from 3:00-4:00PM EST via Zoom.

We recognize that the semester ended abruptly, and we want to create a space for students to connect with DCS staff and each other to reflect upon this unprecedented time and share our personal stories of service. DCS staff will provide questions to guide the conversation, but welcome participants to bring relevant topics or experiences to the event. Come share a story, or simply listen to others' stories and favorite memories from the semester. 

Attending this event qualifies for Commitment to Service Award Reflection Hours.  NO RSVP required. Please join us on Zoom through  THIS LINK
Commitment to Service Award & Virtual Volunteering Update!
The Department of Community Service (DCS) acknowledges that the sudden close of campus may have significantly impacted your ability to volunteer with your normal programs and ultimately limited the number of service hours you were expecting to log in the  Commitment to Service Award  (CTSA) program this semester. We also understand that as you have transitioned home to new communities and there are more restrictions in place regarding in-person volunteer opportunities, you may be struggling to find ways to volunteer. DCS has compiled a comprehensive list of  virtual volunteer opportunities and resources  on our website that all count as CTSA approved service hours.  

Remember, service hours in your home community may be logged in this program. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to Samantha de Melim at  commitmenttoservice@brandeis.edu .
Important Commitment to Service Award Medal Update for Seniors!
Congratulations Seniors! Four years of diligently logging your service hours is about to come to a close and the incredible service you have provided to various communities around the globe will be honored. This is a formal reminder that in order to receive a medal, you must have logged at least 300 hours hours in CTSA (Bronze- 300, Silver- 600, & Gold- 900). 

To be considered for a medal and honored during National Volunteer Week, the last day to log your hours will be Monday, April 20th at 11:59 pm. (This is an extended deadline to provide flexibility during an ever changing past couple of weeks). 

 Additionally, you must follow these  instructions  and submit a one page written reflection to  commitmenttoservice@brandeis.edu . Please stay tuned for additional details on our celebration event.
DCS Virtual Volunteer Challenge!
In the Brandeis spirit of social justice, The Department of Community Service will be issuing a weekly virtual volunteer challenge to our community! Instructions for the challenge will be given every Monday in This Week In Service and shared on DCS social media pages, so make sure to follow along! If you would like to document your participation in the challenge, please use the hashtag #BrandeisVirtualVolunteer and we will highlight new volunteers each week!

All activities will qualify as service hours for the  Commitment to Service Award  (CTSA) program. If you are not already tracking your hours, you can find instructions on how to enroll  here .
Virtual Volunteer Challenge Week 1: Beautify your Community 
There are plenty of outdoor locations, such as beaches, parks, trails, and even your own neighborhood, that you can still enjoy, as long as you are abiding by local laws and practicing safe social distancing!

This week we are challenging you to head outside with your favorite quarantine buddy (dog, roommate, family member, or partner) to beautify your community by picking up litter and moving debris (sticks, rocks, etc) to make it safer for animals and humans to walk, run, or bike. In order to ensure your safety, please make sure you wear bright colors or a safety vest, gloves, and appropriate footwear. For those unable to leave the confines of your home, you can still engage in the challenge by taking action and contacting your local Representatives and Senators to protect the  Endangered Species Act

"Please log your service hours for this challenge in CTSA under the program name "Virtual Volunteer Challenge: Beautify Your Community". If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Samantha de Melim at  commitmenttoservice@brandeis.edu
Connect with us!
Department of Community Service
Shapiro Campus Center, Room 203
P: 781-736-3237

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