Thursday, May 31, 2012

Local Schools End Year in Right Way

Many athletes subscribe to the idea that it is always important to “finish strong.” While “finishing strong” may mean different things to different people, a generally accepted definition is that it important to give a task 100% of your effort all the way through to the end, no matter what. With most local schools at the end, or very near the end, of the school year, we at Humanitarian Service Project would like to recognize a few schools that certainly finished the year strong, by taking the time to reach out to those in need. We specifically want to recognize groups from Downers Grove South High School, Lindop Middle School in Broadview, and Our Savior Lutheran Preschool in Carol Stream for finishing the school year strong by collecting donations for the needy seniors citizens and families we serve.

First up we would like to thank students from Downers Grove South High School for collecting food for our summer Feed the Kids Project. Responding to our call for peanut butter and tuna fish for the 100 needy families in the program, three classes at the High School held a competition to see who could collect the most non-perishable food. In the end 500 cans/ jars of tuna, peanut butter, jelly, and soup were collected by these three classes for the sake of the needy families.

Jay Baum, a teacher at Downers Grove South, drops off the donation from the school.

With these high school students finishing strong, a number of younger students have followed their lead so to speak, and also done some wonderful year end drives. One group we’d like to thank is a group of students from Lindop Middle School in Broadview, who donated six large boxes stuffed full of party supplies and books for the children in our Children’s Birthday Project. Yesterday, three students from the school even made the trek from Broadview to Carol Stream with their Assistant Principal, Sonya Spaulding, to see their generous donation through to the end. 
The students from Lindop dropping off their donation.

Last, but not least, we would like to recognize Our Savior Lutheran Preschool in Carol Stream for creating and donating seventeen “party in a bag kits,” also for the needy children served by HSP. These bags contained all the supplies necessary to through a fun birthday party. We wish to thank these three groups for making time in the end of their school years to help us provide for those affected by poverty and hunger in the community. They have truly epitomized what it means to finish strong. 

The "Party in a Bag kits" from Our Savior Lutheran preschool.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

HSP Picks “Golden Ticket Winners” during Visit to Lake Park Elementary

Yesterday HSP’s Assistant Director, Kristin Maxwell, and two former interns, Tawney and Regina Pauling, represented HSP at the year end “Awards Assembly” at Lake Park Elementary School in Addison. The school, whose needy students were all adopted into our Children’s Birthday Project earlier this year, invited HSP to the event to draw the winners of 10 bikes HSP donated to the school. The students became eligible for the drawing by earning a “golden ticket” by displaying school spirit, having perfect attendance, or being nominated by a teacher. Kristin, Tawney, and Regina were asked to draw the names of the lucky kids who would be awarded the bikes.

HSP has been very excited with our partnership with Lake Park Elementary because we know there is so much need for service there. Around 88% of the students at the school are from families with such low incomes that they receive subsidized lunch. Since our partnership with Lake Park Elementary began, we have been happy to assist Principal Deb Martello, and the rest of the faculty at the school, fulfill the needs of these children whose families are under incredible financial strain. We want to thank all of our supporters for helping us at HSP make a difference in the lives of these needy children. It is only because of you that HSP has been able to reach Lake Park Elementary with, not only these wonderful bikes, but to provide 20 pound birthday boxes full of gifts, books, school supplies, and party supplies for every needy child at the school.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Thank You Pleasantdale Middle School!

The boxes sorted by Pleasantdale Middle School

At this time of year, with the weather warming up and the end of school so near, school children across the country are starting to get a little antsy. With the promise of summer vacation on the horizon, many students are brimming with energy and yearning to get out of the classroom. HSP would like to recognize one such group of Middle School students who opted to use this energy in a positive way. We would like to thank a group of 10 students from Pleasantdale Middle School in Burr Ridge, for spending three hours in our warehouse volunteering their time sorting food for needy families served by our Feed the Kids Project.

Our Senior Citizen Project Coordinator, Tierney Hogan, said the group from Pleasantdale Middle School took to the task of food sorting with enthusiasm, and did the work assigned to them with both care and “extreme efficiency.” These students built 100 boxes full of non-perishable foods such as canned vegetables, soup, pasta, cereal, and main meal staples with such speed, that they also assisted us by categorizing some unsorted food in our warehouse as well.

All the food sorted by Pleasantdale Middle School will go to the needy families in our annual Feed the Kids Project this summer. Through this project, 100 needy families will receive much needed food during the summer months when the absence of school lunch programs increases the already intense financial strain they are under. The project is designed to provide these families (especially the children of these families) the necessary nutrition they need in this time of food insecurity. We wish to extend our deep appreciation to this group from Pleasantdale Middle School for donating their time and energy to make this difference in the lives of these needy families. If you too would like to participate in the program, please call us at 630-221-8340, to find out how you can help. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

School’s Out for the Summer: Not for These Kids

     As the spring semester ends for many college campuses around the area, a herd of freshly awakened students rush to the beaches and local pools to soak in the beaming summer sun after days of sulking over notes and textbooks trying to study for finals. However, this isn’t the case for a handful of the new interns starting up their first days at HSP this month. Referring to the previous posts, we welcomed Jen, Brian, Eric, Sam, Sarah, Stacey and Lianne into our family with open arms. Nervous stares and wandering eyes were just few of the indications that this will be the first internships for all of the newcomers, yet we have no worries that this bunch will have no problem fitting in.
     Our interns are divided into teams based on their projected assignments throughout their internships. One of our Public Relations intern, Sam, is extremely glad to be able to land an internship falling under her major. “I’m thankfully for this opportunity to be exposed to an office environment and get a head start on something I want to do after I graduate. I hope that during my time here at HSP I will be able to improve my writing and get a general sense of what the non-profit business is like.” Our interns will be working on the Senior Citizens Project, Feed the Kids and many more behind-the-scenes projects.
     We will be welcoming two more interns the beginning of June, Morgan and Kate. We are looking forward to working with these new interns and what the summer has in store for us.
Grant interns, Lianne and Eric, organizing grant files.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Tales from the Dock: United Stationers Wraps Gifts for Needy Children

At Humanitarian Service Project, we have a dock from which things can easily go in or out of our warehouse. While we have a few regular shipments, most of what comes to the dock are great surprises from our wonderful supporters donating items to the needy senior citizens and families we serve. Such was the case today when the dock doorbell rang, and we had no indication of who it was. Let us tell you, it sure was an exciting surprise when it turned out to be a truck full of gifts our friends at United Stationers wrapped for the needy children in our Children’s Birthday Project. United Stationers dropped off gifts they wrapped for 26 of the needy children in the project, and they even have more coming in soon.

It may look unassuming, but our dock has stories to tell.

To give you any indication of why the driver from United Stationers was right to use the dock instead of our front door, each bag of gifts contains 4-8 toys, 5-7 books, a stuffed animal and numerous smaller (or “filler)” toys. This means United Stationers graciously wrapped between 104 to 208 large gifts, 130 to 182 books, and countless smaller gift. We want to thank United Stationers for donating the time to help HSP reach out to needy children on their birthdays. If you would be interested in following United Stationers’ example by wrapping gifts, or making some other kind of donation, please check out our website at: to learn more about what we do, and ways you can help. Who knows? The next happy tale from the dock could be about you.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

School of Expressive Arts and Learning Students Express Themselves through Service

“Actions speak louder than words” is such a common phrase that it has become a cliché. However, it has become clichéd because the sentiment behind it rings so true; if a person wishes to express themselves, an action is always the strongest way to do so. For this reason, Humanitarian Service Project wishes to thank two groups of high school students from The School of Expressive Arts and Learning in Lombard for showing their commitment to helping the needy through their actions the past couple of days. Yesterday and today, these thirteen students (divided into two groups) helped sort and create the first two sets of boxes of non-perishable food that will be going to the feed the 100 needy families in our Feed the Kids Project. These students helped us fill these 200 boxes with items such as canned fruits and vegetables, soup, pasta, granola bars, and main meal dishes.

Only a fraction of the boxes the students from the School of Expressive Arts and Learning helped sort for the sake of the needy families we serve.

The Feed the Kids Project was created to provide needy families with the nutritious food they need in the summer months of June, July, and August when subsidized meal programs that they rely on through the schools are not active. We want to thank the students from the School of Expressive Arts and Learning for volunteering their time to help us reach the 100 needy families who will have their needs met through Feed the Kids this summer. If you, like these students, would like to help HSP feed these families, call us at 630-221-8340 for more info.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Thanks for a Great Delivery Day!

Last Saturday HSP held our monthly delivery day to the needy senior citizens served by our project. With 90 pounds of groceries; including fresh fruits and vegetables, bread, frozen meats, non-perishable food, paper products, and a gift from a “secret pal” going to each of the 120 seniors in the project, you can imagine that a lot of work goes into making each delivery day successful. On top of the volunteer produce sorters from Kindercare, who we discussed in our blog last week, our delivery this month relied on groups of volunteers such as our volunteer drivers, volunteer loaders to load up the cars of said drivers, our Monday Food Sorting Team and other food sorters to prepare the food, and the volunteer coordinator of our Secret Pal program. Everyone involved in these groups played a pivotal role in allowing us to reach the very needy seniors in our project with supplies they so desperately needed this past delivery day. We want to thank them for volunteering their time and energy for the sake of these needy seniors.

In addition to these regular supporters, we would also like to recognize two new groups who have partnered with HSP to make our senior delivery days even better. One of the groups, we have discussed before on this blog, is the DuPage Chapter of Birthday Cakes 4 Free, who for the past few months have been providing birthday cakes for the seniors on the month of their birthdays. Rose Garcia, leader of the chapter, dropped off 11 lovely cakes for the seniors, which were donated, this month, by Whole Foods. Rose is looking for people willing to volunteer and help the chapter grow, so check them out on Facebook at: if you are interested in what they do.

The second group we wish to recognize is the Fox Valley Animal Welfare League, who donated food to feed the pets of thirteen of the seniors in the project this month. The pets of our seniors provide them with much needy companionship, and we are very thankful that the League has decided to partner with us to help keep them healthy and cared for. This donation was the League’s first time working with us for delivery day, but it certainly will not be the last. Like Birthday Cakes 4 Free, the League’s generous donations will become a regular part of our delivery days. We wish to thank these two groups, and everyone else who participated in making our delivery day last week spectacular. It is only with your support that HSP is able to provide much needed relief to the needy seniors in our project.

Monday, May 21, 2012

HSP Welcomes a Trio of Interns

Having recently welcomed our new interns Jennifer, Eric, Brian, and Samantha the past couple of weeks, today we are happy to have another trio of interns beginning their internships as well. Allow us to introduce you to marketing intern Stacey Tokuda, grant writing intern Lianne Dottin, and public relations intern Sarah Olson, who will be joining the rest of our summer interns in helping us reach the needy of our community this summer.
Lianne (left) Sarah (second from left) and Stacey (far right) with HSP Assistant Director Kristin Maxwell (second from right.)

Stacey goes to Michigan State University where she studies economics. Stacey says she applied to be an intern here because the idea of working for a non-profit intrigued her. She hasn’t had much experience with charities, so she is looking forward to the opportunity. However, this does not mean Stacey has no experience volunteering. She previously volunteered her time tutoring middle school students. As far as her non-service or scholastic interests are concerned, Stacey loves the outdoors. She enjoys longboarding and generally just likes to be outside.

Also joining our team today is Lianne Dottin, who is double majoring in psychology and communications at University of Illinois. Lianne says interning at HSP was a natural decision for her because she is very active with the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity. Lianne says her love of service stems from her love of people. She is excited at the opportunity to be involved with a non-profit in action. Other than volunteering, Lianne enjoys playing the violin, which she has been doing for 8 years.

Last but not least in Sarah Olson, who is an english major also from University of Illinois. Sarah was searching for a place to do public relations work, and was very excited to learn about our internship opportunity, because she is very interested in our projects. She is excited to be doing her internship with a group that works hands-on with the needy. Sarah has been very active throughout her life volunteering with children, running dance and cheerleading camps. She also belongs to a sorority which works with sick children. Sarah’s hobbies include writing and reading. Her favorite book is The Great Gatsby.

We are excited to have Stacey, Lianne, and Sarah working with us. Please join us in welcoming them to HSP.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Aimco and Kindercare Help us Get Everything “Sorted Out”

With so much food coming into our center from the Stamp Out Hunger food drive this past Saturday, and fresh produce and bread coming in for the needy senior citizens as part of our senior delivery day tomorrow, we’ve had quite a bit of food to sort through this week. Thankfully, we’ve had a number of wonderful people who’ve stepped up to help us “get everything sorted out” so to speak. We want to thank the groups of these food sorters from Aimco and Kindercare, for volunteering their time and energy this week to reach the needy families and seniors in our programs.

With Stamp Out Hunger being last Saturday, our warehouse has become packed with food to go to the 100 needy families served by our Feed the Kids program this summer. However, throughout the week six volunteers from Aimco came to help sort food in our warehouse as part of the “Aimco Cares” Program. These volunteers were a huge help, both helping us get organized after Stamp Out Hunger, and helping to prepare our warehouse to reach the 120 needy seniors in our project with 90 pounds of food this upcoming Saturday!

Another group that graciously came to assists us by sorting food was a group of 9 from Kindercare. These wonderful helpers did not come from one specific Kindercare, but are the directors of each of the local Kindercare Learning Centers. While we are sure its quite different than being the director of a Kindercare, these directors brought enthusiasm to helping us sort out fresh produce to be delivered to the 120 needy seniors in our program tomorrow. We wish to thank these two wonderful groups from Aimco and Kindercare for happily volunteering there time to assist us in reaching the needy of the community. With Feed the Kids around the corner, and deliveries going to needy seniors in our project every month, there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer your time food sorting like these fantastic volunteers did. If you are interested please call us at 630-221-8340 to schedule a time for you.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Another Intern Joins the Team!

Today we at the Humanitarian Service Project had the pleasure of welcoming another of our summer interns, Samantha Isdale, our new public relations intern. Samantha is majoring in public relations at Illinois State University, and comes to us with a strong enthusiasm to learn and serve. Samantha says that she applied for the internship because when she learned about HSP’s various projects serving needy senior citizens and children in the community, she wanted to be involved. Samantha is very excited to be here, and to be gaining experience in both public relations and the non-profit world. Likewise, we are very excited to have her with us.

Samantha says the decision to come to work for HSP as an intern was a “no-brainer” because service has already been such an important part of her life. Most recently, she spent her spring break on a trip serving the homeless in Washington D.C. She says her mother has been a big influence in her life, stressing the importance of helping the needy in her from a young age. Outside of service and school, Samantha’s major passion is volleyball. She played volleyball throughout high school and her freshman year of college, and she continues to play through intramurals. She’s sure to fit right in with Brian and Eric, who we introduced in our blog on Tuesday, who both are quite the sports fans themselves. We are very happy to have Samantha with us, and want to welcome her to HSP.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Giving Never Goes Out of Fashion

At the end of last month, Humanitarian Service Project was honored to be the chosen recipient of the funds raised by the Bloomingdale Women’s Club’s 37th Annual Fashion Show. The show, which is one of the club’s largest annual events, was held April 29th and featured fashions from Carson Pirie Scott, Sassy’s Originals, Bella Bianca Couture, and York Furrier Coats. HSP was even represented in the show by Becky Yambrovich, daughter of Co-founders Karole and Floyd Kettering, as well as her daughters, Morgan and Olivia, who were models in the show.

Last week, everything was made official, when the club presented a check to HSP’s co-founder and CFO, Floyd Kettering, for $9,500! This donation is incredibly exciting, as it will go toward endowments for both a needy senior and child in our programs. This means that a sponsorship for our Senior Citizen and Children’s Birthday Projects will always be in place for a needy senior and child, requiring no additional funds to remain current. We are thrilled that the Bloomingdale Women’s Club donation has made this possible for a senior and child in our projects, and we want to thank them wholeheartedly for selecting us as the beneficiary of the fashion show. Their generosity has helped make such an impact in the lives of the needy people we serve.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Two New Interns Join HSP Team

      Last week, we introduced you to Jennifer, the first of our summer interns to begin her internship. We are happy to say that Jennifer was not alone for very long, as we have recently welcomed Eric Domingo and Brian Jensen, our next two summer interns, to the HSP team. Brian, an accounting student from Indiana University, joins us as our new accounting intern, and Eric, who is majoring in communications at UIC, joins us as our new grant writing intern. Please join us in welcoming them to HSP!


      Brian said he was very excited to learn of our accounting internship because of the opportunity to work one-on-one with HSP’s CFO and Co-founder, Floyd Kettering, who has decades of accounting experience. He cites his father as having a big influence in his life that helped lead him to HSP, as his father has taught him the importance of giving and a strong work ethic. Brian is looking forward to his internship as an opportunity to gain real world experience in the field of accounting. As far as Brian’s personal interests are concerned, he is very into sports (particularly golf) and has previously volunteered his time as a soccer coach for the Arlington Heights Park District.


      Eric comes to us very eager to gain experience writing at a professional level. Eric has been very active in volunteering his time with charities such as the Red Cross and the Chicago Food Depository, and was happy to find an internship at HSP to continue with his passion for serving those in need. Eric says that, from an early age, his parents imparted him with the importance of helping others, and that has fueled his desire to volunteer. Besides volunteering and school, Eric likes to write and play sports. We are very excited to have both Eric and Brian on the HSP team.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Thank You Stamp Out Hunger Volunteers!

Humanitarian Service Project would like to issue a huge, and much deserved, thank you to everyone who participated in the annual Stamp Out Hunger food drive this past Saturday. We had a total of 47 volunteers who in helped a number of ways including; picking up donated food at the post office, helping to load our volunteer drivers at the post office, unloading the deliveries at our center in Carol Stream, and sorting the donated food. Thanks to the assistance of these volunteers the event this year was a resounding success, and will help us provide for the needy families and senior citizens served by our projects. We want to thank these volunteers, and everyone at the post office, for helping us make a difference in the community.

The food HSP received through the drive will go directly to the needy seniors in our Senior Citizen Project and the needy families in the community through our upcoming Feed the Kids Project. In the summer months when school is not in session, children from needy families who rely on subsidized school lunches and other food programs do not receive the nutrition they so desperately need. Each of the 100 needy families in the Feed the Kids Program receives 250 pounds of food in the months of June, July, and August, in order to fulfill this need. We want everyone who participated in Stamp Out Hunger, either by volunteering with HSP, or donating to your local post office, to know that your generosity has had a direct impact in the lives of those in need in the community. If you would like to learn more about the Feed the Kids Project, you can check it out on our website: or call us at 630-221-8340.

Friday, May 11, 2012

HSP Creates another Birthday Memory

          At the Humanitarian Service Project we love celebrating birthday’s not only through our Children’s Birthday Project but with our staff, volunteer friends and interns. When we gather for a birthday, it is a time to celebrate the special day a person was born into the world. This gives everyone who cares for a person a chance to let them know how much we truly appreciate them for who they are and the gifts they bring to all that are lucky to be a part of this person’s life.
          Today we want to wish a very happy birthday to our wonderful Senior Citizen Project Coordinator, Tierney Hogan. This is Tierney’s first birthday since joining the HSP team last November, and we are more than thrilled to celebrate her birthday today with our friends of the project over cake and ice cream. Tierney has been an integral part of HSP, working with the seniors, volunteers and interns to ensure the seniors have all of the support they need through the project. Tierney, has gotten to know many of HSP’s wonderful supporters, and she was very happy that a number of friends of the project were volunteering around today to share in her birthday celebration. Please join us in wishing Tierney a happy birthday!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Two Schools Score an A+ in Helping the Needy

The items donated by Springwood Middle School

As it gets to be the time of year when the school year is getting closer and closer to summer vacation, many students start to lose focus. We have it on authority from a former teacher that even some educators are prone to rest on their laurels at this time of year. However, we at Humanitarian Service Project know at least two local schools where this certainly isn’t the case. In fact, the students and faculty at these schools, Springwood Middle in Hanover Park and St. John’s Preschool in Naperville, are so unaffected by this pre-summer daze that they used their energy to run drives to benefit the needy senior citizens that HSP serves.

Marisa Struyk, the teacher at Springwood Middle School who delivered the school’s donation to our center in Carol Stream, said “that the students really got excited about the idea of helping needy senior citizens, so they worked hard to support the drive.” Their hard work certainly paid off; the school wide drive ended with Marisa’s SUV packed completely full of paper products, personal care items (like soap and shampoo,) and food all for needy senior citizens.

St John’s Preschool’s donation
Following the example of these middle school students, the much younger students at St. John’s Preschool in Naperville also held a very successful drive to provide paper products for the seniors. More than filling seven incredibly large plastic bags, the children at St. John’s collected hundreds of rolls of paper towels and toilet paper. We at HSP wish to thank everyone at both Springwood Middle School and St John’s Preschool for all they have done for the needy seniors in our project. They’ve shown that they are not only committed to finishing the school year strong, but committed to using their energy and resources to help those in need. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Like Mother, Like Daughter: The Talented and Giving Ericksens

With all that the Humanitarian Service Project’s volunteers are able to accomplish with their strength, determination, and brainpower, it is no surprise that their children are quite talented as well. Today we learned about one such child of a volunteer, who we just had to take the time to congratulate on her accomplishments. Emily Ericksen, daughter of our volunteer Secret Pal Coordinator Ginna Ericksen, placed second in her age group at the US Eastern Nationals Gymnastic Competition this last weekend.

Emily, a 16 year old sophomore from Wheaton-Warrenville South, qualified for the tournament by being one of the top six gymnasts in her age group and region. Emily’s favorite event is uneven parallel bars, in which she excels so much that Ginna calls her “queen of the bars.” However, in order to place 2nd in her group, Emily had to be more than just “queen of the bars,” but to excel at the vault, the beam, and the floor sections as well. We wish to congratulate Emily for her accomplishment.

However, when we consider all that Emily’s mother Ginna does while volunteering her time at HSP, it is no surprise to us that Emily is so talented. Under Ginna’s watchful eye, our secret pal program stays organized and moving forward. Thanks to her, the 120 needy senior citizens in our Senior Citizen Project get the joy of receiving the gifts graciously donated by our Secret Pal donors. She has even gotten Emily involved in the program as well! She has also proven to be quite the athlete herself, finishing 2nd in her age division representing HSP at the DuPage Human Race 5K run last month. We wish to thank Ginna for all she has done for HSP. The strength and dedication she has shown while helping HSP reach senior citizens in need, has very clearly rubbed off on her children. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

United Stationers has Birthdays “Wrapped Up” for 35 Needy Kids

Something being stripped completely bare usually does not have positive connotations. However, when the thing being stripped bare is the “to be wrapped” section of the part of center dedicated to the Children’s Birthday Project, we can certainly live with it. This area, that usually houses large bags full of unwrapped toys that will be wrapped before being sent to the needy children we serve, has been stripped bare thanks to the generosity of United Stationers of Carol Stream, who have donated their time and wrapping paper to wrap gifts for 35 needy children in our project!

United Stationers was initially penciled in to wrap gifts for 25 children, but when Dora McLin, the Local Transportation Manager at United Stationers who has graciously spearheaded their wrapping campaign, called in yesterday she thought, “what’s another ten bags?” Well let us tell you, with each bag containing 4-8 large gifts, 5-7 books, and numerous other smaller gifts, 10 bags is no short order, not to mention the 35 total that United Stationers has taken to wrap.

United Stationers has been a wonderful supporter of HSP, by donating their resources and energy to helping the needy children and senior citizens in our projects. It seems that recently, they have decided to add “master wrappers” to their service repertoire, as less than a month before picking the 35 bags up yesterday, they wrapped gifts for 29 children. We want to thank everyone at United Stationers for all that they have done to help HSP reach needy children on their birthdays. If you would like to follow United Stationer’s example by wrapping gifts for 1 or more of the 900 needy children in our Children’s Birthday Project, please call us at 630-221-8340. 

Monday, May 7, 2012

HSP Welcomes a New Intern

Having said farewell to our wonderful spring interns last week, we are very excited that today we got to welcome the first of our incoming summer interns. Jennifer Leverenz, a telecommunications student at Indiana University, has joined the HSP team today as a summer Marketing Intern. In this position, Jen will be actively engaged in assisting HSP staff to improve and advertise HSP’s many programs to reach out to the needy senior citizens and children we serve.

Jen comes to us with a great attitude and an eagerness to be of help. She says she applied for the position because she felt it would be a good atmosphere for one of her first work experiences, and she felt strongly about HSP’s programs. Jen’s parents are active volunteers in the community, and she says they have been a big influence on her by inspiring her to be active in serving others as well. In her own right, Jen is an active volunteer at an animal shelter when she is at school, where she enjoys caring for, and walking, the dogs.

Jen says what she hopes to get out of her internship is a good “hands on” experience to both explore her own interests and combine the cultivating of her skills with a chance to help those in need. Jen anticipates her internship being a real “win-win,” and, while it may be just her first day, everyone at HSP is inclined to agree. Please join us in welcoming her to the HSP team. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

Double dose of joy at the Humanitarian Service Project

          A new chapter has closed today at the Humanitarian Service Project as our first ever set of twin interns finished their 3 month spring internship. Regina and Tawney Pauling are students at Elmhurst College and they are graduating in a few weeks. The girls worked on many fantastic projects during their time here, such as community outreach projects, designing the speaker and warehouse boards and their largest accomplishment, the HSP website photo slideshow. They brought their excitement and creativity with them to work everyday and it shows in the beautiful work they produced.
          The spirit and energy they brought to HSP was as wonderful as the excellent work they created. Regina and Tawney always beamed with happiness and it was contagious, spreading to everyone around them. All of us at HSP will miss their daily smiles, fantastic attitude and willingness to go above and beyond for HSP and the people we serve in the community. The great news for HSP is we will be seeing Regina and Tawney in the near future as they are going to be volunteering at some upcoming events!!!
TwinsFarewell 002
          If you are interested in becoming an intern at HSP, we are accepting applications for the fall schedule. For more information please visit our website at or email us your resume at to be considered for the fall program.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Local Girl Mobilizes to Help HSP “Feed the Kids”

Starting school, learning to read and write, perhaps getting the training wheels taken of your bike; these are big events that happen to people around age five. Unfortunately, while dealing with exciting life experiences like this, many five year-olds, and children of all other ages, in our community are also suffering from hunger. Normally one would expect a person concerned with solving this issue to be an adult, but don’t tell that to Addison White, a spunky five-year-old from Winfield. When Addison found out that there were needy children who would desperately need food in the summertime, when families no longer receive subsidized lunches from the schools, she really wanted to help. In fact, Addison is so enthusiastic about helping the needy that when she saw a flyer of ours advertising our Summer “Feed the Kids Program,” her mother, Jill White, tells us that Addison wanted to start collecting food “that very instant.”

Addison managed to collect four large bags full of food for the needy children we serve, by asking her friends and neighbors. She even made her own flyer (pictured above) advertising her drive to her neighbors which read, “I am collecting food for kids that need food for the summer. Thank you for the help, Love Addison.” Addison also donated gifts to the needy kids in our Children’s Birthday Project two months ago, when she asked the attendees of her fifth birthday party to give donations rather than gifts.

We want to thank Addison’s mother Jill, her neighbors and friends, and, of course, Addison herself for donating this wonderful food. Addison is a living example of how people of all ages and walks of life can make a difference in their community. If you, like Addison, would like to help HSP in our endeavor to provide 250 pounds of food in June, July, and August for 100-150 needy families through our Feed the Kids program, you can learn more from our website: or call us at 630-221-8340.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Help “Stamp Out Hunger”

For the past several years, Humanitarian Service Project has been a happy participant of the annual “Stamp out Hunger” food drive run by the National Association of Letter Carriers. This event is the largest one-day food collection in the country, and, in its 20 year history, has managed to reach hungry people all across the nation with over 1.1 billion pounds of food.

(An example of the food for the needy we received through Stamp Out Hunger Last Year.)
This year’s Stamp Out Hunger Drive is quickly approaching on Saturday May 12th. Food donated through the event goes through the post office to community groups who combat hunger like HSP. As you can guess, May 12th will be a big day for us at HSP, picking up and sorting all the food we are set to receive through the event. In the past we’ve also been blessed to have friends of the project willing to volunteer their time to make the event run smoothly. This year, we still have a few volunteer slots open to meet at the Willowbrook and Carol Stream Post Offices to help load our rented trucks with the collected food. Volunteers are needed at the Carol Stream post office from 3- 5:30 pm on the 12th, and volunteers are needed at Willowbrook from 2 – 5:30.

Even if you cannot volunteer your time for the event, please consider making a donation to the drive if you live in a participating area. The food that HSP receives through the drive goes directly to the needy senior citizens in our Senior Citizen Project and the needy families we serve for our Feed the Kids program every summer, and millions more people affected by hunger are served by other participating agencies around the country. For more information about participating in the event check out this website:, and if you’d be interested in volunteering your time specifically to help with the event, please call us at 630-221-8340 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Bring a Smile to a Senior: Be a Monthly Meal Volunteer

Today being the first of the month, it is only natural for someone to take stock of what they have coming up on their schedule. May specifically is a month when a person is likely to have a lot of events; with celebrations like Mother’s Day, graduations, and the like marking the calendar. However, imagine what it is like for a needy senior citizen whose financial and health issues make going out difficult. For many impoverished seniors, the days of fun events on the calendar or specials meals are simply no longer a reality. This is the reason Humanitarian Service Project created the “Meal of the Month” program for the impoverished seniors in our Senior Citizen Project. Volunteers for the program cook or purchase a meal for one of the senior’s in our project and deliver it to them, giving the senior a joyful event and nice meal that they, otherwise, would not be able to have.

From the feedback we’ve received from the seniors in our project, the Meal of the Month is certainly a program that they cherish and look forward to. One senior sent a thank you to the volunteer who provided a meal to her saying, “Everything was so delicious! It was truly out of this world. You are a very generous person. Thank you so much for everything!” We are currently looking for more volunteers interested in the program so that meals can be provided for more needy seniors each month. If you are interested in reaching out to senior citizens in need, providing a meal through this program is both a practical and fun way to do so. If you have any questions, please call us at 630-221-8340.