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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

    Caught in the ACT

    <ia Breskin is a senior Biology major who has volunteer with ACT’s Faribo Project program since her freshman year at Carleton. Faribo project is an ongoing program that sends volunteers to a group home for disabled adults on a weekly basis. Each week, the volunteers play games, share stories about their weeks, and just have a good time. Below, Lydia describes her experience with Faribo Project over her years at Carleton.

    “I believe that people with disabilities are one of the most underserved communities in modern America. Because I grew up with a sister with developmental disabilities, I was always involved in service projects like Special Olympics growing up. When I arrived at Carleton, I was looking for a way to stay involved. Thankfully, I found a volunteer project that suited my personality and allowed me to form long-term bonds with people with developmental and physical disabilities.

    “After four years with Faribo Project, I’ve gotten to know the guys we visit very well. Every week, we do a relaxing activity and decompress together. The guys are always excited to see us, and they always have new stories to tell. It is important for them to have a purely social activity where they can be sure that we care about what they have to say. When you are employed to care for people with disabilities, your priority is on their safety and overall well being, so it is sometimes difficult to listen carefully and sympathetically. Our priority as volunteers is to be friends to the guys, not supervisors, and this relationship means a lot to them. Because of this friendship, I can see people for who they are, regardless of ability, and this is a truly valuable skill that I think will serve me well throughout my life. I plan to continue to help in whatever way I can to empower people with disabilities and to create a world where they are valued and respected.”

    In addition to volunteering with the program, Lydia has served as a Program Director for Faribo Project, coordinating weekly visits with the staff at the group home and recruiting more volunteers. Because Lydia and the rest of the volunteers are graduating seniors, Faribo Project is in need of a new Program Director and more volunteers for future years. If you are interested in helping serve people with disabilities and gaining valuable leadership experience as a Program Director for Faribo Project, please contact Julia Reid at reidj.

    If this specific area of service does not interest you, but you are still interested in becoming a Program Director for ACT, there are other open positions available! Adopt-a-Highway, Girls Scouts, and Main Street Mentors are all volunteer programs in need of Program Directors for future years. For information on any of these programs, visit the ACT website. If you are interested in becoming a Program Director with ACT, contact Sonya Krishnan at krishnas. As Lydia’s story shows, becoming involved with an ACT program can have a lasting impact on your time here at Carleton and beyond.

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