All you need is love, a box at a time

Cody Deitz, Features Editor

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     Bloomsburg University has quite an array of clubs and organizations on campus, with more becoming involved in community engagement and non-profit efforts. A few semesters ago, a new organization developed on campus around giving love to children anywhere in the world, all contained within the contents of a small, colorful box.

     Box of Love is a charity based in Cincinnati, Ohio and Tallahassee, Florida that provides boxes full of inspirational and fun items to children everywhere that are in need of some hope, happiness, and love. According to the charity website, each box provided contains items that are age and gender appropriate, an inspirational quote, and a hand-made stuffed heart to remind children that they are loved.

     Boxes of Love are sent to all different types of children going through a rough time. They might be children that are in the hospital, have siblings in the hospital, children with families that are struggling financially, or those who have lost a loved one.

     The charity was started by Alexis Colby in 2013. She started the charity to better help children in any way she could, and wanted to find a creative way to do so. Though it originally started in her basement as she finished high school, she started a chapter at Florida State University while she completed her undergraduate degree in social work.

      Last spring semester, the club was charted at Bloomsburg University by Colby’s longtime friend Courtney Enderline, a current senior at BU who resides over the club as president.

     The chapter at BU was based on preparing boxes for children currently covered by charity, but was open to making them for the local community. Though struggles with logistics made working on boxes difficult in the fall semester, the executive board remains hopeful that this semester will be different.

     “One of my goals for the club is for it to keep growing” says Enderline. “I think this club has the potential to do a lot of amazing things for people, and I hope that it will keep running after some of the exec board graduates.”

     Though there were struggles, the club managed to find other ways to give back to the local community toward gaining popularity in hopes of seeing membership numbers grow. Previous activities included making cards for residents at a local nursing home and handing them to the residents personally. Alyssa Fried, senior BU student and Treasurer for the club, said “it was an amazing experience to see the smiles on their faces. Though the club was meant for children, it doesn’t mean love can’t be given to everyone.”

     In the future, Box of Love plans to collaborate with other orgs on campus and have a day of kindness sometime in April. Other potential service projects which include Ronald McDonald House and more opportunities with the local nursing homes.

     “We would love to have more members joining the club in the future, along with more partnerships with other student organizations and more community outreach so we can get requests to make boxes,” says Enderline, optimistically. “It would be great to see positive growth.”