Committed to Service, Students Venture Citywide

A recap of the spring SkyHawks in the City trip

Allison Heithoff, Editor-in-Chief of Quintessence

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It is incredibly easy to read or hear about the seemingly infinite problems afflicting people and places worldwide that sometimes the issues facing our very own community can be overlooked.

While Skutt Catholic offers numerous opportunities to perform acts of service far from where we live, such as Haiti or Native American reservations, those who participated in SkyHawks in the City this past weekend focused on addressing the various needs here in Omaha.

“It is easy to forget that there is poverty and hunger in Omaha, and going to help all those people reminded me that we have problems here too,” says senior Sofia Ferrer, one of eighteen students who went on the trip, in addition to Ms. French, Mr. Goetzinger, and Mrs. Schmitz.

Photo by Hope Stratman
Danielle Oberfoell sorting clothes at the Timberlake Outreach Center

Following school on Friday, March 31, participants headed down to Marquis Assisted Living and sat down making blankets with members of the Very Special People Club. After a night’s rest at the Archdiocesan Retreat and Conference Center, they spent Saturday at the Food Pantry at Heartland Hope Mission. This was followed by more volunteer work at the Open Door Mission Timberlake Outreach Center, before finishing the day off eating pizza and playing games with developmentally disabled adults at Sheltering Tree.

Photo by Hope Stratman
Students pausing for a photo with Michael Tommy, a resident at Sheltering Tree

Sunday morning after Mass, students and teachers volunteered at the Sienna Francis House and ended the weekend with a meal at Big Mama’s, where Big Mama herself made an appearance and concluded with a motivational speech.

“It was a great experience and really opened my eyes up to the different parts of Omaha. It made me realize just how lucky I am,” junior Brianna Harrison recounts.

As students this weekend saw, it doesn’t take a trip halfway around the world to be able to make a real difference in the crippling issues of homelessness and poverty. “It is easy to say that extreme poverty only happens in third world countries and that we can’t do anything to help people in poverty, but there are so many places in Omaha that we can go to make a great impact in lives,” continues Ferrer.

This lasting impact isn’t confined to events of this past weekend. “Students grow together in serving others and partnering with the variety of wonderful organizations in Omaha where they often return to volunteer,” explains Mrs. Schmitz, coordinator of the trip. In this sense, while the weekend may be over, it was just the beginning of things for those who discovered new passions for these various organizations and their causes.