The athletics department plays a huge role in campus life. Athletics asks for student volunteers throughout the year to help at games and meets. Duties include setting up and taking down equipment, collecting tickets, distributing materials or merchandise, and providing information to those attending athletics events.
The various athletic teams and coaches at Centenary University participate in community engagement activities as a team. Coaches and team members plan and prepare for events, as well as participate in campus-sponsored events. In the past, our athletics teams have collected food for local churches, cleaned up the Musconetcong River, completed a Midnight Run, co-hosted an event with the Hackettstown BID to introduce local businesses to students, and hosted a Title IX celebration for the campus and the local community. One of the athletic teams has shoveled snow for local elderly neighbors several years in a row.
Letters Against Isolation
Letters Against Isolation gives back to seniors in assisted living facilities and care homes through writing. Volunteers create handwritten letters that are sent to care homes and facilities that can be sent to seniors in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Israel, and Australia, but Centenary letters typically go to seniors in New Jersey. These letters are meant to spread joy and hope to the lonely and help to keep up the physical and mental well-being of seniors in residential facilities.
Soles4Souls works to provide new clothing and shoes to those going through financial hardship. At Centenary, we collect donations for Soles4Souls all year – collection bins are found outside of Starbucks in the Seay Building and outside the cafeteria in Lackland. Volunteers are needed 1-2 times a semester to help sort shoes for distribution.
Centenary University students can leverage their equestrian skills and passion for horses to make a difference in the lives of children and adults with special needs. Gain valuable work experience, teaching skills, get great exercise, and meet new people. No prior experience with horses or special needs populations is required. Therapeutic Riding At Centenary (TRAC) is recognized as a Premier Accredited Center and Higher Education Member by the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.). Through our therapeutic riding and horsemanship program, we serve children and adults with disabilities from North and Central New Jersey on a weekly basis and during summer camp.
VITA serves the lower-income community in Hackettstown and the surrounding areas. VITA offers free tax preparation during tax season for this population. Centenary University partners with United Way to provide this service to the community. United Way offers this service in the spring during tax season. Individuals reach out to the United Way to set up appointments, then Centenary University students provide the service.
Hackettstown Business Improvement District (BID)
Hackettstown BID’s goal is to promote Hackettstown businesses. They also collaborate with various non-profits to give back to the community. Each year, Centenary participates in Hometown Holidays in early December and the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in mid-March. Volunteers for Hometown Holidays stuff goodie bags for the BID, help to build parade floats, play Santa’s Elf, perform on Main Street and march in the parade. Volunteers for the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade help to decorate the float and march in the parade and give out candy.
Trinity Church – The Lord’s Pantry
The Lord’s Pantry at Trinity Church works to provide food to those facing food insecurity. The Lord’s Pantry also partners with businesses in the Hackettstown area such as Shoprite, Weis, Donaldson Farms, and others to gain additional donations. Volunteers work with The Lord’s Pantry by helping to unload the donation truck every week and during specific events and holidays, may also help to organize and assemble bags for distribution.
Trinity Church Thrift Store
Trinity Church Thrift Store provides various items for the community at a reduced price. The Thrift Shop strives to provide a pleasant shopping experience for customers, so volunteers must commit to two weeks of training and volunteering at least once a week for an entire semester. Volunteers examine donations from the community and approve or decline them for sale. Additionally, volunteers will help to keep the inside of the shop organized and stocked while assisting shoppers.
First Presbyterian Church Community Dinners (2nd Saturday of every month)
The First Presbyterian Church Community Dinners provide an opportunity for members of the community to come together and enjoy a free meal. Meals are funded by a variety of sources including offerings from members of the church, donations from local businesses, and volunteers. Centenary volunteers have prepared the venue for the community dinner, assisted in food preparation, served guests, enjoyed the dinner, and then helped with clean up. Centenary students are always welcome to attend the community dinner even if they are not volunteering.
Habitat for Humanity of Warren County, Washington, NJ
Habitat for Humanity of Warren County provides affordable housing for families in need by renovating and building homes. Build volunteers could help with any part of the building process. Volunteers do not need any experience and will be trained for any jobs they are asked to do. Restore volunteers work at the retail location on Route 57 and those duties could include working the cash register, loading and unloading supplies, completing maintenance or janitorial duties, merchandise staging and refurbishment, or assisting customers on the sales floor.
Midnight Run, New York City, NY
Midnight Run provides food, clothing, and toiletries to the homeless community in New York City. Centenary students and staff drive into New York City and stop at multiple sites to distribute food, clothing, and toiletries to the homeless. Volunteers organize and sort donations on campus and participate in the Midnight Run. On the day of a Midnight Run, volunteers make bagged lunches in the cafeteria, load supplies in the vans, and go into New York to distribute items to the homeless.
Musconetcong Watershed Association, Asbury, NJ
The Musconetcong Watershed Association works to improve the Musconetcong River and Watershed and keep its natural resources. Volunteers participate in clean-ups, water monitoring, and restoration projects.
We are happy to work with organizations based on student, faculty, and staff interests. Contact Kathleen.Greco@CentenaryUniversity.edu with suggestions and ideas.