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INTO gift-wrapping donations to go to MU Disaster Relief Fund

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Students, faculty and staff will have the opportunity to have their Christmas gifts wrapped for them in exchange for a donation to the MU Disaster Relief Fund Wednesday.

The event, which will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the INTO Center, originated from Molly McClennen, Marshall University INTO-Marshall instructor and Undergraduate Pathways Program coordinator.

“We wanted to give something back to Marshall this holiday, so we decided to give to the MU Disaster Relief Fund, which benefits Marshall students who were affected by the June floods,” McClennen said. “Immediately after a disaster, there is usually an outpouring of donations and offers of help, but after the story is no longer in the news, the need can be forgotten, but it takes months or years to recover from a loss like so many West Virginians experienced last summer. I thought it would be nice if we could help some Marshall students who still need help paying tuition or buying books and other school supplies.”

All supplies for the event have been provided through donations and include eco-friendly options, as well as paper decorated by INTO students.

“We have been collecting donations of paper, tape, boxes, tissue paper, bows and ribbons, so we will have everything there,” McClennen said. “We also have some eco-friendly options for people who do not want to use wrapping paper, and we have a limited supply of paper that was decorated by the INTO-Marshall students, with holiday greetings from around the world.”

McClennen said people are able to bring as many presents as they would like wrapped while the supplies last. All donations will be given to the relief fund and can be made by cash or check in any amount or online directly to the MU Disaster Relief Fund, regardless of whether or not the individual wants any gifts wrapped.

So far, the event has nine volunteers who will work as gift-wrappers, but anyone is able to volunteer by contacting McClennen or just stopping by.

“Most workplace holiday events are either social, like a holiday party, or charitable, like a food drive,” McClennen said. “Both of those kinds of events are great, but I thought it would be nice if the faculty and staff I work with could do something fun together for the holiday while giving back to the Marshall community. I know people who were affected by the floods and I know how getting back on your feet after losses like that is a long process. I thought this event was a way we could make the holidays or the spring semester just a little bit easier for some fellow members of the Marshall family. Plus, it gives Marshall students, faculty, staff and even members of the Huntington community a chance to take a break from doing their own wrapping while helping someone. It is a win-win situation.”

Olivia Zarilla can be contacted at [email protected]

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