An Inside Look at Bobcat Break
Are you someone who loves to volunteer and meet new people? If you answered yes then Bobcat Break is the perfect program for you! Since most students are usually busy throughout the semester, Bobcat Break gives students the opportunity to volunteer and serve the community during academic breaks. The program is part of Student Volunteer Connection, a charted student organization at Texas State. The mission of Bobcat Break is to urge students to become active citizens within the community by focusing on causes/issues that affect our world, country, and community. I had the chance to sit down with one of Bobcat Break’s site leaders, Ellie Puentes, to talk about her experience with Bobcat Break.
Ellie has been participating in Bobcat Break the past two semesters and is currently a site leader. As a site leader, she is given the chance to choose the social issue she wants to focus on for the volunteer trip she is in charge of planning during the semester. Ellie, an aspiring Veterinarian, chose to focus her service work around what she is most passionate about, the environment and helping animals. When asked why she joined Bobcat Break Ellie quickly replied, “I wanted to join a group that made a feel like I belonged, but still do my own thing and make it my own.” Ellie says some of her biggest takeaways from her time in Bobcat Break have been “the relationship building with people that you don’t know, the satisfaction of doing something for other people and finding people who share the same kind of view toward volunteering.” As Ellie nears the end of her time here at Texas State, she says she will always remember the amazing memories she made during Bobcat Break’s volunteer trips.
Over the Holiday Break, Ellie and other Bobcat Break members didn’t just sit at home and relax. Instead, they had the opportunity to help and serve a 5,300-acre refuge that provides habitat to different wildlife. This refuge also serves as a place for those interested in enjoying nature by expanding outreach to the local Hispanic and Latina community, planting trees and other plants, as well as rebuilding trails.
If you are interested in volunteering with Bobcat Break the process to apply is simple and can be found on the Student Volunteer Connection webpage. They are currently taking applications for their two Spring Break trips. The first trip will be focused on providing shelter, food, clothing and safety to low-income families and those experiencing homelessness. The second will be dedicated to volunteering to work at a facility that incorporates barrier-free equipment for adults and children with special needs to enjoy various activities. The link to apply can be found here: Bobcat Break Homepage