Send It On is impacting the Rhode Island community


Courtesy of Send It On

Send It On members gather around their donations.

Veronica Rodriguez, Herald Reporter

Last semester, a new club named Send It On sprouted with the intention of helping the homeless. Its mission was to help spread awareness on the subject of homelessness, which they did by partnering with shelters and raising donations for them. As of right now, Send It On has collaborated with Crossroads Rhode Island and is looking to make connections with other organizations.
Send It On’s President, sophomore May Kapadwala, has a passion for helping others that led her to start the club.

“I’ve always had a passion for wanting to help others so I would in smaller ways when I was younger, like bringing food and baked goods to a shelter in my home city,” Kapadwala said.
In February of 2020, Kapadwala met with Dr. Jeremy Campbell about this passion. Dr. Campbell, director of the University Honors Program as well as an associate professor of anthropology, is now Send It On’s advisor. Campbell and Kapadwala considered a few ideas on how to bring the program to life and decided that Send It On could either be an independent program completely separate from Roger Williams University or a university club. After speaking to individuals who are now club officers and doing extensive research on how to achieve the desired goal, it was decided that a club would be the best approach. Kapadwala also expressed that she would love if Send It On could become a program known outside of RWU.
Students might be wondering why this club officially started just last semester. The simple answer is paperwork. Kapadwala, along with the other officers, began the process of becoming a club almost a year ago as freshmen. In that time, they had a lot on their plate with getting accustomed to college life and getting to know their peers and faculty. From March to July of last year, they had to do some prep work, figure out how to become a club and form a connection with Crossroads Rhode Island before they could apply to be a trial club. From that point on, they contacted the school and began what needed to be done in order to be a trial club.
Send It On focused on Crossroads Rhode Island because they knew Rhode Island was the location they wanted to start their work in. Jesse Sands, the club’s secretary, suggested Crossroads Rhode Island as the first shelter they partner with. Their public relations officer, Maeve Haldeman, reached out to the organization and was able to set up a meeting to discuss the current partnership the two entities now have.
For in-person volunteering events, Send It On was only able to host one in-person event due to the pandemic and their efforts on working to be an official club. During this event, students prepared food bags donated by CVS which were then given to Crossroads. For the CVS food bags event, everyone was required to wear a mask and volunteers came at specific times in order to follow the guidelines. Haldeman was in charge of this event. With the new semester, the club wishes to hold more in-person events not only for volunteering but for fun and educational purposes.
The club has also completed other projects. Last November, Send It On donated gloves, hats, scarves, men’s underwear and socks. Some of the items were sent to the university for packing while other items such as the men’s underwear and socks were sent directly to Crossroads Rhode Island.

The club also has its own merchandise, which was designed by Sands. All the funds gathered through their merch go to helping shelters get the resources they need. To get the word out about those they are working to help, the club uses its Instagram page to regularly post stories about people in the shelter. Send It On gathers the stories they wish to use from the Crossroads website on a document and sends it to them for approval once a month. Send It On ensures every story is approved. Due to legal reasons they cannot post any of their material without explicit approval, so they make sure to contact Crossroads representatives before posting a story.
As for any upcoming projects, Kapadwala shared they do have some sales planned to raise money for Crossroads and other shelters they hope to partner with. They will be having a special sale for Valentine’s Day. For March, they have a raffle lined up and they are contacting different stores and companies to see if they would be interested in donating items to be raffled. So far, a helicopter ride and a custom made Tucci Lumber baseball bat have been added to the raffle. They are still reaching out and looking for more items to include that will hopefully pique the interest of students in the school and people outside of the university.
In April, the club plans to hold different events for National Volunteer Week. The club’s hope is to raise a couple hundred more dollars for Crossroads and to make contact with another shelter for partnership by the end of the spring semester. As always, they plan to continue donating, with school supplies, masks and non-perishables being just a few items on that list. Now with more time on their hands this semester and the desire to donate, they have started to look into donations. They have even a scheduled meeting with Crossroads to ask what kind of donations they need.
Send It On strives to be a club students want to take part in as well as being a group of students who can help as many individuals as they can. The club is currently having a “Spread The Love” sale containing handmade Valentine’s Day baskets and bags. Pictures can be found on their Instagram. Remember, they are always looking for more volunteers! Students can find them on Hawk Link and their Instagram page @send__it__on with two underscores both times.