WASHINGTON- After another great season with the Cardinals winning their second Landmark Conference title, the CUA field hockey team enjoyed a variety of community service events around Washington, D.C. The volunteer opportunities consisted of returning to the U.S. Armed Forces Retirement Home during Christmas and volunteering again in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.
The team also experienced two new service opportunities by revisiting the Armed Forces Retirement Home later in the year to help its residents move into a new facility, as well as participating in CUA’s Relay for Life.
“My favorite volunteer event we do is the Christmas decorating at the veterans’ home,” said sophomore Alli Stevens. “It’s fun to spread cheer and to be able to give back to our veterans.”
Starting the year of service by spreading the Christmas spirit, the Cardinals ventured on every floor of the U.S. Armed Forces Retirement Home. The players decorated halls, windows, and trees with different garlands, lights and ornaments. Along with making it a fun and festive event, the team didn’t cease to lose its competitiveness as they worked to win the best decorated floor.
Later that winter, the Cardinals joined the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces Retirement Home again to pack up many residents’ rooms and help the veterans get ready for a big move into a brand new facility on the campus. During this service opportunity, players got the privilege of visiting with more of the veterans and listening to their stories.
On January 19, the team joined more than 115,000 people across D.C. in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. Among the various types of services such as putting together care packages for the troops or cleaning up local roadways, the team was stationed at a local elementary school to make the school more welcoming for the kids. Sophomore Maura Campbell explains, “We were able to give back to the community, but we were also able to bond as a team in a unique way that ultimately strengthened our team chemistry.”
The Cardinals were split into two different groups: one group painted at least two canvas paintings each, filling in various university names and mascots to decorate the hallways. The other group joined many other volunteers in painting and fixing up classrooms. While having the opportunity to have fun with each other, the team was also able to create a better learning community for the kids.
Stepping into the spring season, the team joined forces with hundreds of other Catholic University students on March 22 to participate in the CUA Relay for Life. The team set up two fundraising activities. Participants could use their tickets to make a bracelet (stringing a bead for each lap completed) or have their nails painted. “This event really brought the whole CUA community together, and to have our team be able to participate and fundraise for this event was so special,” said junior Megan Comunale.
Through all of these incredible and enriching volunteer efforts, the Cardinals were able to serve the Washington D.C. community while having fun and continuing to grow as a team.