On Saturday, Oct. 1, 2011, Walden University hosted its sixth annual Global Day of Service. Thousands of students, alumni, faculty and staff members, family and friends gathered in more than 1,100 cities around the world to demonstrate the international impact that social change agents can make in just 24 hours.
Nearly 3,700 volunteers from the Walden community participated in more than 200 service projects around the world—of which more than one-third spanned Central and South America, Africa, Europe, Asia and the Caribbean. Service projects included improving safety of communities; bringing much-needed healthcare to underserved communities; raising awareness of mental health and education issues; restoring areas affected by natural disasters; beautifying and restoring beaches, rivers, schools, churches and community centers; and supporting U.S. troops.
"Walden's strong spirit of community and its commitment to social change were the factors that led me to choose this distinguished online university for my master's degree," said Persephone Munnings, RN, MSN, CM, a Global Day of Service project leader in Nassau, Bahamas, president of the Nurses Association of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, and MSN alumna from Walden's School of Nursing. "As a proud Walden graduate, I felt honored to lead a Global Day of Service project that provided Bahamians with health screenings targeting noncommunicable diseases and to effect positive social change right in my island home."
Members of the Walden community give generously of their time and abilities as part of their personal ongoing volunteer efforts; in fact, Walden alumni have a 62% average rate of volunteerism, compared to the national average of 50% among college graduates. Global Day of Service, however, marks one day a year when the entire Walden community can come together to make a greater difference and demonstrate how positive social change can impact the world.
Last year, the Walden community contributed more than 400,000 community service hours. This year, volunteer hours continue to be tracked using the Walden Service Network, an online resource for the Walden community to search for volunteer opportunities, recruit volunteers and promote community service events where they live and work.
Since its founding in 1970, Walden has attracted a community of lifelong learners who share a common desire to make a difference. Walden students, alumni and faculty and staff members bring Walden's mission to life through research, conferences and service projects focused on effecting positive social change. To learn more about Walden's ongoing commitment to social change, including the recent release of the Social Change Impact Report, visit www.WaldenU.edu/socialchange.