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Oklahoma State University

Into the Streets seeking more student volunteers; event slated for Nov. 7

Monday, October 12, 2020

OSU campus

With safety precautions in place, students are again looking to make a positive community impact with Into the Streets. The event, which strives to unify the community through a day dedicated to meaningful community service, is Nov. 7. Student volunteers can sign up at https://forms.gle/sscJU2mhg7m4k6cu6

“Although in the middle of a pandemic, Into the Streets believes that helping serve the Stillwater community is still achievable,” said event organizer Zane Pedersen. “We still are aiming to help serve our average 200 job sites for the community while respecting and abiding to COVID-19 protocols to ensure safety to not only our job sites, but also to our volunteers that help make this event so special to many.” 

The event begins at 8:30 a.m. and will run throughout the morning and possibly into the early afternoon. Volunteers are encouraged to stay to help clean up any remaining houses.

Volunteer sites will be throughout the Stillwater community, while the tool pick-up, breakfast and general staging area will be in the Noble Research Center parking lot. 

Event organizers have taken a proactive approach to addressing potential health hazards related to the COVID-19 pandemic and have released details regarding those plans for the event: 

Check-in 

  • Executive team members will drop tools off at fraternity and sorority houses the night before the event to limit large group exposure. Executive team members will be broken up into groups of three in a car to keep group sizes small while all wearing masks. Groups will stay socially distanced from the fraternity and sorority house members during drop-off. No one will be allowed to approach the vehicles other than executive members. Tools will be dropped off on the porch of each house, so to limit any contact between the executive team and the volunteers. Organizations and small groups will still be asked to drive through to pick up tools the day of the event but will be asked to remain in their cars the entire time. 
  • Everyone will be required to wear masks at all times throughout the day and follow the city’s mask mandate when within six feet of other people. This includes volunteers in the car dealing with the executive team, as well as the executive team. 
  • Tools will be disinfected before being dispersed to volunteers (spraying disinfectant on each rake, shovel, etc. and wiping them down thoroughly). Group leaders at each house will be asked to store dropped off tools in a secure location to cut down unnecessary contact.
  • There will be a virtual check-in. Cars will drive up to the executive team and let them know their group affiliation. Once the executive team checks them in, they will air drop job sites to the volunteers. Once they’ve secured their job site details, groups will drive over to tool pick-up where the executive team will distribute the required tools (rakes, trash bags, disinfectant, etc.) for the given job site. Groups that already have their tools will go back to their houses following check-in and split up into groups taking the tools that they need to their respective job sites. This year we are having a staggered pick-up of tools/food from 9 to 11 a.m., allowing minimal volunteer contact with each other as well as requiring volunteers to stay in their cars the entire time.
  • Have one car pick up breakfast (bagels, donuts, & coffee) for each group to minimize food lines and clutter. Groups will place orders via a form sent the week prior to the event. All food will be pre-packaged at restaurants and will be given to volunteers in original packaging to limit exposure. Coffee will be poured at the event by volunteers using gloves and masks to comply with all health and safety regulations.
  • Groups will be required to disperse tools and food outside of tool pick-up area (Right after they pick up tools)

At the worksites 

  • There will be no contact with any of the residents. Residents have requested what they need done in advance. If something changes, volunteers are encouraged to leave a note on the door/mailbox 
  • Volunteers are required to wear masks at all times (The ENTIRE time the group is together including car, job sites, etc.). Volunteers are also required to wear gloves when handling any tools or equipment.
  • Outdoor volunteers are required to practice proper social distancing. This includes while raking leaves, helping with gardening projects, cleaning the exterior of windows, etc. Volunteers are not allowed to use power tools of any kind, nor are they allowed to haul anything to the dump.

Post event 

  • Individual group leaders return tools to a return pile, where they will be disinfected before storage.
  • Social distancing will be maintained by the executive team and by the volunteers throughout this process
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