Students babysit for Haiti

Briana Troske

Briana Troske

The devastation that took place in Haiti on Jan. 12 has earned worldwide attention, and students from the Phi Upsilon Omicron Honor Society are lending a helping hand to those in need.

The honor society will host a “date night” from 6 to 9 p.m. for parents with children ages 2 to 6. The parents have the chance to take a night off from parenting and enjoy a night out on the town.

The event, “Have a Heart for Haiti,” will be held Feb. 10 at the Fishback Center for Early Childhood Education in Pugsley Hall on the SDSU campus.

“Each year we are required to do a professional project for the honor society for competitive judging, and we thought the Haitian earthquake was the perfect one to try to help,” said Debbie Briggs, an adviser for the Phi Upsilon Omicron Honor Society.

Many activities have been planned for the children who attend the program. They include story time, a card station to make Valentine’s Day cards for their parents and a kite-making station.

While the children are at the program, the honor society wants to show them what Haiti is like and what they are going through. They will read books about Haiti and have a room that will be dedicated to making food bags.

“The whole experience will allow the children see what it’s like to live in Haiti during this difficult time,” said Julia Konstant, a senior dietetics major from Watertown.

About 35 people from the honor society will help the night of the event. They will babysit up to 100 children from the Brookings area.

“I am most excited about exposing the children to the culture of Haiti,” said Briggs. “The project is close to home for me because I spent time in Haiti several years ago.”

Prizes will be awarded to those who donate money to the honor society. Whoever donates has a chance to win buy-one-get-one movie theater coupons. They can also win a coupon for free in-town delivery from Flowers on Main and many other prizes.

The honor society will accept free-will donations and plans to donate the money they raise to the organization “ImpactLives” to support citizens in Haiti.

“ImpactLives” is based in Minneapolis, Minn., and is a non-profit organization. The organization has been able to feed 30,000 children in Haiti each day.

“I think honor society members will get the satisfaction of helping others and get more knowledge about another culture,” said Jennifer Kampmann, one of the faculty advisers for Phi Upsilon Omicron. “Hopefully it will instill that value of giving into them.”