Trinity College held it’s 21st annual Do-It Day this past Saturday, September 7th, The purpose of Do-It Day is to strengthen the working relationships between Trinity College and local organizations. Hundreds of student athletes and some student service groups assist these local organizations with projects they identify. Throughout the day, Trinity had over 350 students placed with 18 different organizations that ran the gamut of arts and housing organizations to public parks and churches.
At Bushnell Park in downtown Hartford, the Trinity College softball team weeded gardens and cleaned up the grounds. For several first-year students on the team, Do-It Day also served as their introduction to Hartford.
“This is a lively, diverse community,” said Alyssa Gazivoda ’23, reflecting on her first experience in Hartford. “We were working in the park, and people stopped to encourage us.”
Older students also noted the benefits for the team as a whole. Gillian Birk ’21, a junior who participated in her third Do-It Day since arriving at Trinity, described how it also served as “the first activity for the team this year” because softball is a spring sport. “It’s a bonding experience” that brings members together.
The Men’s Swimming team was working in full force when we caught up with them at Journey Home where they were loading furniture into the moving vans for families transitioning out of homelessness. Over the weekend, Journey Home completed 7 deliveries to clients in Hartford.
At Colt Park on the east side of Hartford, the Trinity Men’s Basketball team also cleaned up the grounds and spread mulch. This was the fourth Do-It Day for Christian Porydzy ’20, a Trinity senior, who recalled how he first explored Hartford’s extensive park system on bike with the Cycling and Sustainability First-Year Seminar. Jadakis Brooks ’20, who was also a member of the same first-year seminar, explained how Do-It Day “makes you feel good by giving something back to Hartford, especially a park where people are bringing their kids to play.”
Grace Episcopal Church and the Place of Grace Food Pantry is where we found one of our student groups, the JELLO Community Service Organization. Peyton Orloff ’22, Amodini Katoch ’22 and others were helping to sand and prime the outside deck and deep clean the floors inside the church.
Community partner Kathie Rovetti said they have a cleaning service that helps, but the students do a really thorough job because they’re here for one day and they want to make sure it’s comfortable for people who come in to use the food pantry. Some of these very same JELLO students volunteer weekly at Place of Grace Food Pantry to help set up the pantry and distribute food, reaching about 130-160 families a week.
At the south end of Fairfield Avenue, the Trinity Women’s Basketball team helped the Cedar Hill Cemetery Foundation organize and run its 12th Annual Mystery Scavenger Hunt. Participants visited different sites, staffed by Trinity students, to obtain creative clues that direct them to historical locations around the cemetery.
“We could not put on this event without Trinity College students,” said Chrissy Lewin, a Cedar Hill volunteer for the past fifteen years.
Overall, the 21st Annual Do-It Day was another big success, thanks to our community partners, Trinity Athletics, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, and the Office of Community Service and Civic Engagement.The Office has been receiving emails with positive feedback on the work the students did over the weekend, and we were happy to see Trinity students out in Hartford and exploring our beautiful City of Hartford.