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Members of the UW student chapter of the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS) accomplished a great deal in community service and professional development activities in the year 2007-2008. In April of 2007, the group's advisor floated the idea of the group working with the Albany County Habitat for Humanity on a community project. The members warmly welcomed the idea and began making suggestions about ways in which the group could be involved with the Habitat project incorporating all the different areas of specialization (majors) represented in the group. In June of 2007, some officers together with the advisor met with board members of the Albany County Habitat for Humanity to let them know that the group was interested in working with the organization in their project. Close to two hours were spent mapping out a strategy in which the students would be involved in helping and giving back to the community at the same time putting into practice what the students have learned in their various majors.
In the fall they invited Habitat Board members to speak about the possible projects at one of the member meetings. Members met again and developed a needs assessment survey to identify the areas that the families felt they needed help with. The group then proceeded to host a potluck as a non-intrusive way of getting to know the Habitat families, to make sure that the group understood what the pressing issues for the families were and to also get further input from the families about their most urgent needs. Workshops were planned a few weeks after the initial meeting with the families; the first workshop was on interior design and it was conducted by Treva Sprout, a Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) instructor and interior designer. Chapter members organized and supervised activities with the Habitat children while their parents attended the workshop. A second workshop, on financial management has been organized for 4/16/08. It will be conducted by Mathew Scott an undergraduate finance major here at the university. Members submitted a proposal for an educational session to share their Habitat project at the national AAFCS conference to be held this June in Milwaukee.
The AAFCS group members have also worked with the Big Brothers and Big Sisters staff. Last year the group planned and hosted a Halloween party for the children: over 100 children and parents were in attendance. Along with organizing these activities, the group has also helped with the 2007 Consumer Issues Conference held here at the University of Wyoming in September 2007. Prior to the Conference, the members distributed posters and brochures around town and campus, the students helped set up and take down the exhibits, and they also assisted with audio recording sessions during the UW Consumer Conference. The AAFCS group also sponsored the Wednesday night showing of "Maxed Out", a movie about the credit industry with the director/producer, James Scurlock, and Consumers Union attorney, Norma Garcia, in person, the evening before the full-day Consumer Issues Conference. The public was welcome to the movie session.
In November the group hosted a luncheon for the FCS department faculty and staff. This luncheon was organized to invite the faculty and staff to learn more about the group and to let them know what projects the group would be involved in and to seek their professional help in conducting some of the workshops intended for the Habitat families. To support their own professional development, last June three student officers attended the annual AAFCS conference held in Reno. One student was a national Vice President of the student section. All three of the students received leadership education during the conference. Last fall the members built upon the visioning plan they had done in April 2007 to develop the year's plan of work. The group invited Mike Lange, UW Program Advisor, Student Activities Council, to speak at one of their meetings on event planning. The chapter secretary also obtained training to learn how to do minutes in a professional and efficient manner using a laptop. The final thing on our agenda for this semester is to help plan the FCS department annual awards dinner to take place on the 29th of April. The president of the group worked with the planning committee. The
Check out the chapter's newly launched website at www.uwyo.edu/aafcs.
Last Updated on 10/10/2008 2:19:09 PM
American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Chapter