Mary Pallisco taking box from president Rob GordonUWindsor president Rob Gordon (right) hands student volunteer Mary Pallisco a box of donations toward the “Adopt-a-Family” campaign.

Community cause opens hearts and wallets across campus

The holidays are a fun time for her family, says Mary Pallisco, and knowing they are sharing the blessings of the season with others makes the experience even better.

The third-year social work student volunteered Thursday to help load donations from across the campus to the Children’s Aid Society Holiday Program. Under the program, faculties, departments, and individuals “adopt” families and raise cash or buy items on their wish lists.

For the second straight year, Pallisco enlisted members of her own family to sponsor one of the community’s needy families.

“My family works on it together, buying gifts to donate,” she said. “It definitely feels good to help people.”

She noted that her studies in social work alerted her to issues of poverty in Windsor-Essex.

“We’re learning about community struggles and also what we can do to help,” said Pallisco.

That urge to help filled a truck with boxes of gifts for the charity drive, Tuesday outside the Welcome Centre.

This year, the University of Windsor community collected over $34,000 worth of gifts for more than 40 families, said campaign organizer Sabina Howell, administrative assistant in the Office of Public Affairs and Communications.

“I am always impressed with the generosity of people at the University, especially when it comes to making the holidays special for children,” she said.

It’s a sentiment Pallisco shares.

“Seeing what we do make an impact on people really just fills me with joy,” she said.

The Children’s Aid Society reports the program has enjoyed unprecedented support, with every registered family or individual in need finding a sponsor.

Strategic Priority: