Each year, OVP has programming that is focused on newly developed ideas intended to reach new populations and subjects that are in need of assistant, as well as traditional programs that continue to draw hundreds

featured program

cans across the quad

In partnership with the Eastern Illinois Foodbank (EIF), the Office of Volunteer Programs (OVP) is hosting Cans Across the Quad Food Drive from Sunday, September 21 through Monday, September 29 to raise 25,000 meals for Hunger Action Month. RSOs, campus offices and individuals are invited to collect and drop off canned and non-perishable food items for the event. Every 1.2 lbs of food collected equals six meals.

Totals for the number of pounds for each RSO, campus office, and individuals will be tallied and awards will be given out. RSOs will be rewarded with $200, $100 and $50 for first, second and third place, respectively. The top campus office will receive a Einstein's Bros. Bagel breakfast and the top individual will receive a $25 gift card to the restaurant.

All collected food should be dropped off on Monday, September 29 from 12 - 3 pm at either the Illini Union's Anniversary Plaza or the SDRP's inside lobby. Two info sessions will be held on Thursday, September 18th at 11:30 am and 4:30 pm in Illini Union 406. Contact OVP with questions or learn more here. Let the collecting begin!

Click for more information about the Eastern Illinois Foodbank.

annual programming

fall programs

August 23 | ServiceFIRST | Available to new incoming and transfer students, ServiceFIRST features opportunities to complete service projects, learn how to volunteer during the school year and, of course, meet other students. Click to pre-register.

September 4 | Volunteer Fair | Over 50 community agencies and Registered Student Organizations come together and provide students with information about how to get involved with the campus and local communities.

September 25 | Cans Across the Quad | The program focuses on collecting as many canned and nonperishable food items as possible over the course of one day. All food is donated to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank, where it is then distributed to agencies throughout Central Illinois.

November 3 - 21 | Thanksgiving Basket Drive | The drive provides baskets that have all the ingredients to make a Thanksgiving feast. Donors can give nonperishable items, a grocery store gift card or contribute an entire basket. 

December 1 - 15 | Holiday Gift Drive | Each winter, OVP partners with many local agencies to collect toys for underprivileged children. On average, the drive collects over 500 toys each holiday season.

spring programs

January 19 | MLK Day of Service | Students honor and continue to carry on Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy as they work with campus and community members in a multitude of volunteer projects. 

April 12 - 18 | National Volunteer Week | This usually occurs within the first two weeks of April as OVP organizes and lines up an entire week's worth of volunteer opportunities. Outstanding individuals and agencies throughout the campus and community are also recognized for their service.

ongoing programs

Weekend Service Trips | OVP offers weekend overnight trips to cities in the Midwest. Participants will complete service projects and learn about community issues while exploring their destination. Two trips are scheduled each year.

Service RSO Workshops | Service RSOs are invited to attend drop-in workshops hosted in our office to learn how to better recruit volunteers, plan projects and lead their respective RSO. the workshops will be on a bi-weekly basis during the school year.

Student Volunteer Network | If you are struggling to get your RSO organized and want to collaborate with other groups and coordinate large-scale events, then look no further than the Student Volunteer Network sessions. Students who want to connect, learn and partner on projects find everything about volunteer recruitment and service at these monthly meetings. And free snacks are always provided!

Speakers and Career Programs | Throughout the year, a variety of speakers and professional career development sessions are hosted to give students an understanding on how to incorporate their volunteer opportunities into future jobs, graduate school and post-graduate service opportunities.

Illini Union Events Calendar

Event dates and times subject to change. Please check back for updates.

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