February 21, 2017
Pay It Forward hosted its “Bag It Forward” event Feb. 16 to benefit the local women’s shelter, Womanspace East. Club members set up a table in Lawrence Hall lobby Thursday afternoon for passing students to build a bag for a woman in need.
Patty Sorg, junior criminal justice major and former president of Pay It Forward, said it would be an easy process.
“The table will be set up like an assembly line, similar to our bagged lunches event in the past,” Sorg said. “Students will walk through and put items we have set out in their bag, and at the end we’ll have a bunch of markers that you can write encouraging words to give them some hope.”
Mackenzie Sugrue, junior mass communication major and club president, prepared for the event by picking up necessities for women.
“We have resealable Ziploc bags that people can fill up with tissues, pads, tampons, mouthwash and deodorant,” Sugrue said. “We talked to Womanspace, and they said that women are always in need of these items and they will definitely be used.”
In the past, Pay It Forward delivered bags to the Wood Street Commons, a temporary safe living space for those who are facing a housing crisis. This year, they decided to take bags to Womanspace on Fifth Avenue, a safe environment for struggling women and their children.
Pay It Forward has a few more events in mind. Following spring break, they are planning to host a movie screening in the JVH Auditorium to raise money for the Syrian Refugee Crisis.
“We are still deciding what to show, but I’ve been looking into inspirational movies,” Sugrue said. “We are not sure of the specific date yet, but we are hoping to show it in March.”
The club was also looking into building a team to participate in the annual Walk MS at Point State Park on April 23.
“My mom has MS, so it’s been something I’ve been involved with for a few years,” Sugrue said.
Registration is free and those who are interested can sign up online at Walk MS.
Ryan Scott, a freshman psychology major and member of Pay It Forward, said he really enjoys community service and encourages other to check it out.
“I was involved with an event for CORE [Center for Organ Recovery and Education] my senior year because my dad passed away from liver failure,” Scott said. “I really liked helping out and am happy to see other people happy.”
Photo: Sophomore Conor Mendelson and Freshman Haley Marra set up the assembly line for Bag It Forward.