21 Years of Heart:The WSU SGA Auction

Posted on April 12, 2012 by

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By Marion Calabro – Senate Correspondent

On March 30, the Worcester State University Community showed its “Heart” at the 21st Annual SGA Auction. The Worcester State Student Government Association and SGA Auction Committee in conjunction with many faculty members host this event. Over $32,000 was raised that night to benefit three Worcester Charities: Abby’s House, the Mustard Seed, and Sherry’s House.

The motto for the SGA Auction has been “have a heart”. This is an appropriate slogan for an event that takes a full year for student volunteers to plan and run. Student driven efforts transform the Student Center’s Blue Lounge from a room into a well-managed auction house. Of course, the SGA Auction is not made possible exclusively by the committee. It takes the entire Worcester State community to make this event possible. The items auctioned off are donated by local businesses, students, and families. Faculty from Student Activities, Academic Success, Campus Police, and Residence Life among others also volunteered to staff the event.

One year of preparation goes into each auction. This year the SGA Auction Committee was co-chaired by Erin Desmarais, Sarah Fulginiti, and Trevor Sansoucy. Under their leadership the Auction Committee worked tirelessly to gather and catalogue donations, run numerous fundraisers, and set in place the logistics for such a large event.

On the evening of Friday, March 30th these efforts came to fruition.

A string of Worcester State students and faculty in blue shirts circled the Blue Lounge in the student center individually showcasing each donated items to a crowded room. Attendees included WSU President Barry Maloney, students and their families, the Student Events Committee, in addition to other community members. Those in attendance had the opportunity to bid on a plethora of items including Worcester Sharks tickets, Red Sox tickets, autographed sports memorabilia, gift baskets, Worcester State University undergraduate classes, WSU parking spots and much more.

All of the funds raised during this evening and in fundraisers throughout the year is donated directly towards three local charities: Abby’s House, The Mustard Seed, and Sherry’s House. Each of these charities also holds a reverse auction during the event. During the reverse auction a story is told to those in attendance and each bidder is given the unique opportunity to give these stories a happier ending.

For Abby’s House, a battered women’s and children homeless shelter, their story was one of furniture. Abby’s House acts as a safe haven for those in need without asking for much, if anything, in terms of rent. This year all they wanted was to refurnish the rooms in which these women and children stayed.

For The Mustard Seed, an organization that helps Worcester’s homeless community, their story was one of shelter. The Mustard Seed gives sleeping bags to the homeless free of charge as a means of warmth and shelter against the elements. This year they had run out of sleeping bags and wished to be able to stockpile more.

Sherry’s House is a home that provides support as well as room and board to families that have a child with cancer. Their story was one of a child’s wish. A local child affected by an aggressive form of cancer wanted nothing more than to take his parents and sister to Florida as they had never been before.

During these reverse auctions the feeling of community and generosity in the room piqued as those in attendance came together to donate their money directly towards these stories of need. The community in the blue room that evening truly showed its heart and all of the organizations were able to achieve their happier ending. Outdated furniture will be replaced. Over one hundred sleeping bags will be purchased. A child will take his family to Florida.

The hard number for the amount raised during the 21st SGA Auction will not be available for a few weeks. Items not sold at the auction are put up in later online auctions and those funds are yet to be accounted for.

Even still the amount raised stands at over $32,000 which surpassed the group’s goal of $30,000.

As the work for the 21st SGA Auction comes to an end over the next few weeks another project starts. The discussion of the 22nd Annual Auction has already begun.

If you could not attend this year’s auction the 22nd Annual SGA Auction will be held around March 29, 2013. Better yet, students are encouraged to join the SGA Auction Committee for a truly unforgettable experience. Questions or comments regarding the SGA Auction may be forwarded to sga@worcester.edu.

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