On Feb. 26, Mohawk College students have an opportunity to volunteer for a walkathon for Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY).
CNOY is an annual fundraiser where people come together and walk to raise money for people experiencing hurt, hunger and homelessness.
People walk in the cold to better understand what it would feel like to experience homelessness in the winter.
To participate in this event, people can choose to start a fundraiser, donate money or walk. Many people who walk also raise money, but it is not required to participate.
Over a hundred organizations from across Canada participate to raise funds for their local communities.
There are three locations in Hamilton where people can participate, including Hamilton City Centre, Hamilton Mountain and Hamilton Barton.
Neighbour to Neighbour is one of the organizers and their walk is located at Hamilton Mountain.
Marija Kupina is a volunteer coordinator who hosted an information session at Mohawk College to speak to students about taking part.
“We have had a few Mohawk students sign up so that’s really great,” said Kupina. “This year we are looking for around 50-60 people to volunteer.”
Neighbour to Neighbour needs volunteers to encourage walkers, provide directions and monitor and support people who may be having a hard time.
“The beauty of volunteering is that it makes people feel good,” Kupina said. “They can be part of an experience without a huge commitment.”
Volunteer experience can get students involved in their community. It also looks good on a resume when students are looking for jobs.
Kristine Sayaco is a Mohawk College student who is a volunteer for CNOY. She found out about the opportunity from a friend who is also participating in the event.
Sayaco is a first-year student in global business management. She has previous experience from when she volunteered at the 2020 Olympics.
“Volunteering is making good use of my time,” said Sayaco. “For me I learn by interacting with people and it is also fruitful because you are helping an event or people.”
If students are not available on Feb. 26 to volunteer for CNOY, Mohawk lists different volunteer opportunities on its website.
Students can sign up to volunteer for CNOY on the website cnoy.org/volunteer.