Moving Forward

We are now halfway through this semester, and I feel as if time has flown by! We now only have half of a semester left to gain interest, plan a drive, collect 120 boxes of supplies and raise over $1,500. Time is running out, so it’s time to get moving! Now that we (Sarai and myself), know our target audience, what can we do to get their extra school supplies? Most residents on campus are freshmen students, who are living on their own for the first time, many on their own dime. So how do we get them to donate? The question “What’s in it for me?” pops up very often, and we have learned that it is necessary to provide an incentive.

Holly Casino Night

In addition to USF Greek Village, other housing areas have stepped up to host our drive! By partnering with different areas of housing at USF, we have the opportunity to  help out with the wonderful events they have already planned. The Resident Assistants of the Holly Apartments annually host a Casino night in their activity room, Holly J. This year, it will be occurring on March 1, from 7-9 PM. The event is open to all USF students, and everyone can enjoy a fun night of Craps, Black Jack, Texas Hold ‘Em, and many other Vegas-style games. This year, the theme is 1920’s, and everyone is asked to dress in their best 1920’s costume.  Due to their generous nature, they have granted us permission to not only collect supplies at this event, but they have also agreed to give attendees who bring supplies an extra raffle ticket. This trade-off will be advertised within all of their halls, in order to spread awareness!

Today, we contacted Dr. Liz Kaplon, the Academic Initiatives member of the USF Housing and Residential Education team, and let her know about our project. Thankfully, she has agreed to support us, and help spread the word! (Thanks Dr. Kaplon!) With her support, we hope to expand Housing’s involvement by speaking with the Residence Life Coordinator’s of every community. By doing this, we can move our drive forward, and collect thousands of items from students all over campus. What’s next? Sarai and I will continue to meet with the RLC’s of different areas in order to fully explain the goal and methods of our project. We also plan on meeting with the individual RA staffs to get them on board, as well give them a priority mail flat rate box to fill. Some ideas we have to get the RAs and their residents excited for this are to host competitions, similar to the one occurring in Greek Village, and continue to partner with their large events.

As of now, we have a plan for supplies, but don’t know how to collect money!

Sarai and I are responsible for individually collecting at least 10 boxes, 20 total, but it is our hope that we far exceed this goal. This being said, her and I alone are responsible for coming up with the funds to ship all of these boxes. This leaves us with $259 as the minimum to be raised. How will we raise this? This is where we need YOUR help! For those of you who no longer have children living at home, and have no school supplies lying around, we do not ask that you go out and buy supplies. Instead, we ask that you donate the $12.95 that you would have spent in the store on the shipping costs for the boxes. To make a tax-deductible donation, click here:

If you do want to donate supplies, check here to see items we need:

If you have any ideas for people to contact, places to hold drives, or ways to raise money, we welcome any suggestions and help!

About Kati Fratesi

My name is Kati Fratesi and I am a senior at the University of South Florida, majoring in Psychology and focusing on leadership studies. I am an active member of many campus organizations, including Delta Gamma Fraternity, Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement Leadfellows and the National Society for Leadership and Success.
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