Students are Encouraged to Volunteer at HOPE

Lynnsey Veach, City Editor

Since it is only the third week of the New Year, students might be looking for opportunities to volunteer in the community for their “new year, new me” resolutions.

Housing Outreach Prevention Education has volunteer opportunities for community members and Eastern students.

Angie Hunt, who has been the housing program director at HOPE for over 15 years, said the organization is a comprehensive domestic violence program offering a wide variety of free, confidential services for anyone impacted by family violence.

HOPE’s mission is to empower people to live nonviolent lives through the provisions of housing, outreach, prevention, and education.

“When we are successful, the community is successful,” Hunt said.

Hunt said there are many ways for Eastern students to help HOPE such as by donating their time.

Clubs such as the National Pan-Hellenic Council, TRiO, Student Government, the Sociology/Anthropology club, the FEM club, the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Student Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, Student Community Service, Pemberton Hall, members of the Aging Studies program, the Gateway program and the Psychology club volunteer with HOPE.

Hunt said Greek organizations on campus also help out HOPE, including Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc. and Delta Sigma Theta.

EIU FEM and Women’s Studies are producing The Vagina Monologues on Feb. 25, 26 and 27, with some of the proceeds going to HOPE.

Hunt said volunteers and attendees would be needed for this as well.

“Honestly, we get so much support from EIU students,” Hunt said.

Hunt said HOPE needs volunteers throughout the year and there are many ways for Eastern students to get involved. There are internship opportunities every semester in their Housing and Children’s Advocacy programs. Hunt said students that participate in these opportunities and donate their time can gain practical experience.

“Volunteering is a wonderful way to gain practical experience, but it also looks great on a resume,” Hunt said. “It’s also a wonderful way to give back.”

HOPE has several major fundraisers and events throughout the year such as Bowls of HOPE, which is scheduled for Feb. 23.

Hunt said this is an event that needs many volunteers, since this it gives HOPE funds for the year.

Hunt said there are always different projects that need student assistance, from organizing HOPE’s storage units to their holiday program.

Students and any volunteers interested in working directly with the clients can do so in HOPE’s 40-hour Domestic Violence Training Program.

Hunt said she hopes and suggests students continue to volunteer since HOPE does help people in their age group.

According to, “One in five women will be the victim of attempted or completed sexual assault during her college years.”

Hunt said if students are interested in volunteering at HOPE, they are encouraged to call the office at 217-348-8815.


Lynnsey Veach can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]