By Jacob Lancaster// Staff Writer
The Board of Stewards at High Point University is a student-led group that plans Chapel worship services and serves as student leaders in the Chapel community. Every semester, the Board of Stewards selects a community organization to recieve the offerings collected during Chapel services.
Every fall, the Board’s project of choice is the Angel Tree project through the Salvation Army, but there is much more flexibility during the spring semester. This year, the Board of Stewards teamed up with West End Ministries, which provides various services including a Boys and Girls Club, a local women’s shelter called Leslie’s House, community meals and more.
For this project, the Board of Stewards chose to support West End Ministries’ Bountiful Harvest Community Garden. The garden is open to the public and welcomes anyone to take as many fresh vegetables as they need and promotes a healthier lifestyle for the community.
The Board worked to raise funds to pave a walking track around the three to four acres of land of the garden. The track will offer community members a place for fellowship and exercise.
Fundraising for this initiative began through the weekly chapel offering and community partnerships. The Board also partnered with Barberitos and Andy’s Frozen Custard to raise money.
Barberitos hosted a give-back night for the Board of Stewards. Part of the proceeds of each meal were donated to the Board. Andy’s Frozen Custard donated 200 fundraising coupons, which the Board was able to sell to further contribute to the walking track project. Both of these projects helped to enhance community relationships on campus as well as in the High Point community.
HPU students also made independent contributions to the fundraising efforts, such as selling pizza in the Greek Village. HPU’s Student Government Association also partnered with the Board and donated $5,000 to this project.
Beyond monetary donations, several Board of Stewards members volunteered to pull weeds and put fresh dirt onto the raised beds in the community garden to help West End prepare for planting in the spring.
On another occasion, about half of the board members served at West End’s Thursday night community dinner, spending time with the children in the Boys and Girls Club before serving them food and cleaning up afterwards.
The Board of Steward’s partnership with West End has helped to form a deeper relationship with the Chapel and the community. Partnering with West End Ministries means more than providing a monetary donation. Partnering with various organizations helps the Board of Stewards and the HPU community to form relationships with the High Point community and understand how to meet more of their needs.