On Thursday, Oct. 6, an informational meeting was held in the Warch Campus Center Cinema regarding the Council on Community Service and Engagement’s (CCSE) Humanitarian Projects Grant. Junior and current chair of CCSE Anita Li presented the information. The grant is Lawrence-sponsored and available to any student with an idea for a humanitarian aid project that they would like financial support to conduct. It is worth approximately $2,000. It is part of Lawrence’s initiative to encourage students with big ideas to engage with the world and make a difference.
The grant can be awarded only to individual students, not organizations, on account of the availability of LUCC funding for organizations. The grant can cover anything relevant to the project, from supplies to travel expenses. The scope of the project can be as near as the Appleton community or as far as another continent. According to Li, there is “a lot of flexibility in what you can do,” but the council is particularly looking for students with “big ideas, not the things you would expect.” Throughout the presentation, the importance of innovation and specificity were stressed.
Although the grant amount listed on CCSE’s webpage is $2,000, there is a degree of flexibility to the award from year to year. According to Li, the award “depends on the number of applicants and on how much is requested.” For smaller projects, the total amount may be divided up among applicants. Larger projects may be awarded the full amount.
In the past, the CCSE grant has been awarded to multiple students with widely varying ideas. Some recipient organizations of past ideas are Ghana Reads, Pakistan Flood Relief and Hurricane Katrina Relief. One project that was highlighted was junior Nijesh Upreti’s project to help rebuild hospitals and clinics in his native country of Nepal following a devastating earthquake. Another student had a project that focused on teaching yoga and meditation for well being.
The CCSE accepts applicants of all backgrounds and ideas for consideration. While not every project has been fully funded, CCSE has given aid to many volunteers.
The deadlines for applications are Friday, Oct. 28, and Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. All applications are to be reviewed at the same time by a committee of three to four people. After review, applicants may be called in for an interview and additional paperwork. Students are encouraged to contact the CCSE with any questions.