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The time to make a difference has never been so easy with events like University of Montevallo’s service fair. The service fair happened on March 18 in Anna Irvin where 14 organizations shared volunteer opportunities with all students who attended the event and curiously stopped at their tables.

Sophomore Jennifer Payne said, “I really enjoyed the service learning fair.” Payne thought the fair beneficial to her Child and Family Studies major. She said, “I was able to learn about some local agencies where I might complete my internship during my senior year.”

Not many students attended the event but the ones who did inquisitively viewed many of the tables. The choices were varied and vast with organizations like: Alacare Home Health and Hospice, City of Montevallo, Owen’s House, Yellow Dot Program, Shelby County Historical Society and St. Andrews Episcopal Church Clothing Ministry.

“I visited the table for Owen’s house and learned about services they provide for abused children in Shelby County,” said Payne. She also visited the Falcon Scholars table and found out that they work with Owens House as well. Payne said, “I am definitely interested in participating.”

There is a chance to volunteer in just about anything. The choices go from building ramps for the disabled with Disability Rights and Resources to making baskets and friends with the elderly by joining Alacare Home Health and Hospice.

There is a chance to work with kids by joining Boys and Girls Club, Owens’ house or helping maintain a bike trail with the city of Montevallo. The city also needs volunteers to help with their fundraisers and prepping of middle school students for Montevallo’s sister city, Echizen, Japan.

There is a “cultural student exchange every year and it’s paid for by the fundraisers and donations,” said Cindy Holsombeck, assistant to the mayor.

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The chances are numerous and available for anyone willing to help. The Office of Service Learning and Community Engagement can help to find an opportunity for anyone interested. Many of the organizations listed are also a part of UM’s Falcon Scholars in Action program.

Payne stated, “I have enjoyed volunteering since high school. I am glad that UM held this event because I was able to learn about agencies I didn’t know existed before.”