On the beautiful early Saturday morning of August 30th our Civic Engagement and Community Service Center gathered our amazing students to serve in our very own University Park’s community farm. Our students were enthusiastic enough to drive to Riegel Farm and sweat themselves to help create a clean home for the animals. The purpose of our students going to the farm was to show support, connect and learn about one of our community partners.
The farm has different interesting animals from pigs, rabbits, chickens, horses, sheep, goats, and llamas as well as more exotic animals like peacocks and alligators! There were stalls for each kind of animal which needed its own style of attention in the aspect of setting and food supply and cleaning process. The cleaning of each stall is a weekly process that the farm owners perform given the kinds of animals. Having experienced it this day, it was easily understood that it is not an easy process and requires a lot of labor and many teamwork to complete this task.
The process of cleaning started by scrubbing and sweeping each stall and ended with adding new shredding and Pine Pellets. The cleaning process included washing and bleaching mats that were under old pellets. The mats under the pallets were of rubber material and with the length of each mat the heavier they were. It took a lot of effort to carry each of the mats and scrub what was under it and then carry the old pallets the dirt on them on a wheel barrel to be disposed.
After all the cleaning that was done, water buckets were refreshed and inserted back to each of the stalls, and new food was also added to each of the stalls. The exciting part of participating in this event is that the students were able to interact closely with the animals and learn about the needs of each of the animals and how to care for each of the animals.
Asking the students to reflect on this service day has allowed us as community organizers to understand the interests of the students and how much they are willing to partake in activities as such. It is to understand that not every individual has the same interest as the other and so this volunteer opportunity has provided students with a chance to reevaluate their purpose of serving in their community.
GSU Students in Action
Clean home and fresh food for the chicken
One of the clean Stalls