Student Volunteer Connection hosts Love in a box

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Student Volunteer Connection hosts Love in a box


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GERI LEMMONS
@GeriLemmons

On Friday Nov. 11 from 7 p.m.-7 a.m., The Student Volunteer Connection hosted Love in a box, a simulation event during homeless awareness week at the TAMU-CC library.

 
Love in a box is an event that is held in the breezeway near the library. Students bring boxes to sleep on as well as either a blanket or sleeping bag for the night. The goal of this experience is to show students what it is like for those who have to live on the streets and don’t get the most comfortable things to sleep on.

 
“The reason why I, in particular, like love in a box is because it is an interactive emersion experience,” said Samantha De Melim, student activities coordinator. “It allows students to put themselves in a place of someone that is experiencing homelessness.”

 
Thirteen students came out to figure out what it was like to experience homelessness.

 

There were rules that everyone had to follow while they were there, including they could not use electronics, they cannot sleep in a car, they could only bring one meal, and most importantly they needed to bring a box in order to sleep on top of it or in it.

 
“It’s one thing to go volunteer and give back to them but it is another thing when you experience it,” De Melim said. “It kind of puts everything into perspective.”

 
De Melim said the experience was very eye opening for students, especially when taking into account the way that people looked at them as they passed by. De Melim said she was sitting there on her box just waiting for people to show up and saw the judgement from people walking by.

 
“While I was sitting there alone, like in my box, people ignored me,” De Melim said. “Students were exiting the library and people were passing me on their phones and they would take a quick glance at me and then look away really fast.”

 
De Melim said this opened her eyes to the way many people sometimes look and treat people that are experiencing homelessness. She said the stigma is that all homeless people want is money, but sometimes people don’t take into account that they are humans too and sometimes they just need to be acknowledge like any other person.

 
“Love in a box is an important experience for students because we see a lot of homeless people on the streets and in cities and sometimes we don’t have a second thought for them,” Tia Mullins Senior marketing major said. “With Love in a box, it allows students to be more appreciative of what they have.”