At 13, 布丽姬特麦克多诺 ’23 began helping her mom provide meals for Caring for Friends, a non-profit organization with a link to their local church that operates a freezer where people can pick up needed food. Back then, McDonough would write the labels on the packages and place them into the boxes. Soon McDonough was cooking the meals herself—making larger portions of her family’s nightly dinner to provide extra food for Caring for Friends. 她在高中期间扩大了自己的影响力, 在荷兰的Villa Joseph Marie高中, where she prepared goodie bags and cooked meals at the Caring for Friends facilities in Philadelphia with some of her classmates.
McDonough explains that the food is available to people who are not able to get food items for themselves or people who do not have the ability to make homecooked meals. 教区居民在她的教堂, 假设BVM在Feasterville, are some of the recipients of the homecooked meals stored in the church’s freezer. But, if needy parishioners are not able to pick up the food, McDonough and her mom often deliver it. Most of the food is delivered to the main Caring for Friends warehouse and distributed within the area.
“Just seeing how grateful people are for something that I can do that’s so little – because it really doesn’t take any extra time out of my day to cook a couple extra meals, package them and take them to church – and to see how grateful they are for something. 真的很高兴看到，”她说.
在组织中如此活跃, McDonough would like to see more freezers added to expand access. 但更重要的是, she would advocate for getting the word out that people don’t need to throw away left over food; they can package the food and donate to a number of freezer locations in the area.
With McDonough’s dedication to helping others imbedded into her DNA, a high school friend suggested that she volunteer for the American Red Cross. 它非常适合 biology专业 from Trevose, Pennsylvania, who plans to attend medical school to pursue a career as a dermatologist. 麦克多诺应用, trained and passed the clearances and began volunteering for the American Red Cross with her friend. She serves as a donor ambassador where she checks people in for their appointment and after they have given blood, provide snacks to make sure they are okay before they leave. 再一次, 她把她的服务范围扩大到包括她的同学, when she jumped on an opportunity to host a blood drive at Immaculata. With oversight from Immaculata’s Student 健康 and Wellness Center, McDonough coordinated her first blood drive for her community service project for Immaculata’s chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success, 她在哪里担任财务主管. During this past semester, she co-sponsored a blood drive with IU for the Troops campus club. 这两次献血活动总共有122次献血.
The Red Cross’ website states that every two seconds someone in the U.S. 需要血液. So, 和麦克多诺一样忙, she volunteers for about two local community blood drives a month, along with being a member of the women’s soccer team since freshman year and serving as a student ambassador at Immaculata. 因为对血液的需求总是很高, 目前正处于一个临界点, McDonough would like to see locations within the community host multiple blood drives.
“I know many places typically host an annual blood drive, but I would think that if they have the space and the capability, 为什么一年不举办不止一次献血活动呢?她问道。. 去年，伊玛库拉塔举办了三次献血活动.
It is because of this tenacity and dedication to improving the lives of the people within her community that Immaculata recognized McDonough with the Community Service Initiative of the Year award at the recent Student Leadership Awards held at Immaculata. She hopes that by winning the award, other students will be inspired to volunteer.
麦克多诺在伊玛库拉塔发展得很好. With her older sister graduating from Immaculata, McDonough was very familiar with the campus. She wanted a college with smaller classes and professors who knew students by name. She found that she really enjoys the community environment fosters by the faculty, 教职员及学生.
“Obviously, you have your close-knit group of friends, but the amount of people that you meet. Even though we are a small school, I meet new people every single day!她笑着说. However, it’s not the quantity of the people she’s meeting – it’s the quality. “Everyone is so nice, approachable and willing to have an open dialog with you about anything. It makes it enjoyable to be here and attend the activities that we have on campus,” she states.
It’s not surprising to know that McDonough plans to continue, 如果不扩展的话, 她将来的志愿者工作, 无论生活将她带向何方. She emphasizes that many of the things that she does is not very time consuming, 她强调所有积极的方面. “Volunteering can be so rewarding in so many different ways.”