Pot of Gold: St. Patrick’s Day Greetings Brighten Vets’ Days

service learning, veterans Kadi Anderson, a student at Globe University- Eau Claire, and her four children brightened St. Patrick’s Day for local veterans by delivering hand made greeting cards to the Veterans’ Home in Chippewa Falls, Wis. 

Kadi chose this as her service-learning project for her Global Citizenship class. Global Citizenship is a general education course that promotes networking and service to benefit the community.  Kadi found this project to be a “pot of gold” for her, her four children, and for the vets. Here’s her story:

Why did  you choose this project?
One of the reasons I chose to work with veterans is that I have a lot of family and friends that have served int the military, and I feel a certain closeness to that portion of the population.  

How did the project benefit you and your children?
My service-learning project benefited not only myself, but also my family at the same time. I took my children with me so that they can see and experience a new situation. I ended up explaining that the people were living in the facility because they did our country a great service.  The project introduced and helped to familiarize my children to people who are much older who many times were in wheel chairs.  It benefited me by allowing me to have a way to show my children people in a different setting.

How did the project benefit the residents?
I knew that the residents do not get a lot of visitors, and I know that the residents would usually love to see young children. I decided on delivering a St. Patrick’s Day card to put a bit of brightness in their day.

How did the residents respond?
When we were at the facility handing out the cards the members many times brightened at the sight of the children and their smile got even bigger when they (the children) handed the card to them.  They were truly excited and happy to see my children.  The members (the home is uniquely set up in “neighborhoods” and refers to those living there as members) staying at the home  benefited by the presence of my children and the cards by bringing a little bit of happiness to their lives, and it gave them something to hang on their walls.

How did this project help you become a better citizen?
Part of becoming a good citizen is being active in the community and showing the people around you what it is to be a good citizen.  I feel that I was able to achieve that by exposing my family to people that are in a different situation than we are, and by doing something for the members of the facility, and by just taking an active role in the members’ lives, even if just for that one day.

Do you plan to continue visiting the vets?
I hope to continue visiting the Veterans Nursing Home as my family gets older. By continuing the visitations with veterans I am opening my children’s minds and giving myself a boost in my resume.  I am glad that I had the opportunity to visit the members of the facility. It opened up my eyes to the need for volunteers, and that my family would be a happy addition to the group of volunteers.