ROTC begins fundraiser for homeless vets
Published: Thursday, September 27, 2012
Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 13:05
In an effort to aid and bring awareness to homeless veterans, the senior military science class will begin accepting clothing donations come October and will also host the annual Halloween Fun Run at 6 a.m. on Oct. 26, at the Kidd Field.
“This helps to promote not only the ROTC program but it is also for us soldiers to give back, to give back to the society, to the community and especially with our vets and the homeless,” said Lt. Andrew Smith.
The preparation for the event and the drive begins a month in advance and organizers are hopeful they’ll draw big numbers this year.
“Last year all our classes donated a great deal of items, that lead was greatly needed, however this year we hope to do the same plus more,” said Cdt. Sandra Anane, officer in charge of the event.
Clothing donations for any gender, age or size will be collected throughout the entire month of October.
“It doesn’t matter what kind of clothes people are willing to donate,” said Staff Sgt. David Ponce.
The ROTC program is collecting clothes within three locations on campus; the education building, the liberal arts building and the library. All three locations will have a box labeled “donations” and will usually be placed within the main entrance or lobby of the buildings.
The Halloween Fun Run consists of two separate groups; running and walking. Both groups welcome anyone who is interested.
All members of the ROTC program at UTEP are required to participate in the Halloween Fun Run. Students in the ROTC program encourage other UTEP students to come out and join the cause for the purpose, as well as the entertainment value. “It’s for a good cause and we’ll even have a bit of fun. This is good for our community,” said Cdt. Ethan Reimers, junior business management major.
Since the Halloween Fun Run is around the famous fall holiday, cadets, soldiers and others are welcomed to come in costumes.
“The cadets and the soldiers are in the running group and they run in costume too,” said Smith.
Cdt. Alex Soto, a sophomore Spanish major is excited to be able to run with fellow cadets and soldiers in costume on that early Friday morning.
“I think it’s going to be fun because we’re with a group running for a cause and it’s for a good purpose,” he said.
A costume contest for participants and pets will also take place.
“Anybody can come and we do a costume contest for the kids and for the dogs or pets,” said 2nd Lt. Jayme Mellette. “Usually we have civilians come just to dress up and they’ll walk with their pets dressed up too.”
The ROTC program is expecting about 133 people at a minimum, but with awareness and outreach, attendance at the event may increase to 150 to 200 people.
Since the Halloween Fun Run is held at 6 a.m., continental breakfast will be served at Kidd Field including bagels, orange juice and water for those that attend.
Overall, the Halloween Fun Run’s purpose is to give back to the community.
“UTEP is highly involved with the community as it is and so is the ROTC program,” Ponce said. “We’re working together to help benefit the homeless population, (it) is something we take seriously and that we have always done, we also hope that the community can help.”
Marilyn Aleman may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.