Managing change on site

BOSTON — “It didn’t take long before he wanted to come home with me,” said Kelly Furtado, site manager for Jumpstart at Suffolk University, who met four-year-old Kevin in Rochester, N.Y. “He would cling to my legs and I would try to explain, ‘I live in a dorm, I don’t have any toys.’ He said he didn’t care. He told me he would sleep in my bathtub.” It was then that Furtado realized the rest of her life would be spent helping children, and trying to make a change.

Furtado, now 27, was majoring in English at the University of Rochester in N.Y. when she began working as a corps member for Jumpstart, a national early childhood education organization for at-risk preschool students. Here, she began working with Kevin, who had been taken away from his abusive mother. “He needed someone that he could trust,” said Furtado. “It took awhile but eventually I became that someone for Kevin.” Continue reading

S.O.U.L.S. captures homelessness realities

BOSTON — Suffolk’s Organization for Uplifting Lives through Service (S.O.U.L.S.) held a photo exhibit for Hunger and Homelessness Awareness month on Nov. 6 at Suffolk University to help change common misperceptions students have about the homeless.

For the seventh year in a row, S.O.U.L.S. has been sponsoring a clothing and food drive for Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Month at Suffolk University.  Each year, an exhibit of photos taken by homeless people themselves is presented to the Suffolk community.  This year, the exhibit was called Perspectives: From One Lens to Mind’s Eye.  S.O.U.L.S. worked with Neighborhood Action, an organization offering several programs, such as food and clothing donations to those in need.  Together, S.O.U.L.S. and Neighborhood Action gave cameras to 10 homeless people in the Boston area to capture different aspects of their lives. Continue reading

Alternative Spring Break ’08

BOSTON — While most college students travel to a tropical location like the Bahamas or Mexico for their Spring Break to party, a select 40 applicants chose to make a positive difference for others during their Spring Break.

At a reunion type event, The S.O.U.L.S. group hosted an information session on the trips they took. Traveling on what they call ‘Alternative Spring Break,’ the students went to two destinations, one in Waveland, Mississippi and the other to El Paso, Texas, where these 40 students split up to help communities in need. Continue reading

SOULS Alternative Spring Break

BOSTON — Put away the bathing suits and flip flops and break out the work boots and jeans. Suffolk University students are partaking in a different, less party-oriented kind of spring break this year.

Suffolk University’s S.O.U.L.S organization is hosting an alternative spring break program in Texas and Mississippi during this year’s regularly scheduled break. Volunteers will participate in poverty relief projects through Habitat for Humanity in Texas and Katrina relief in Mississippi through Community Collaborations International. Continue reading