Neighbors to Neighbors (N2N)
“Neighbors to Neighbors” (N2N) launched in 2012-13 with the goal of connecting the first-year neighborhoods and local community organizations through active service. Each first year neighborhood is connected with one specific community partner in the local Carlisle area with the intent of creating small weekly service projects for the students of the neighborhood. In addition, there is one N2N Liaison for each neighborhood, who is an upper-class student staff member in the Office of Community Service & Religious Life, responsible for leading the service projects and working with the Residential Community Director (RCD), neighborhood programming boards, and community associations to create a culture of service within the first year neighborhoods.
N2N community clean up day.
For the 2012-13 academic year, Adams partnered with Downtown Neighborhood Connection to focus on sustainability projects; Drayer partnered with Thornwald, the local nursing home; and the Quads partnered with Bosler Children’s Library. Some of the projects for Adams included weeding a local community garden, painting recycling bins to stand out in parks, and participating in a community clean up. The most successful and popular project for Adams, however, involved staffing an Easter Egg Hunt in the spring, and it earned N2N press coverage in the Sentinel.
Every Wednesday evening, Drayer residents work with Thornwald residents in a game, such as Bingo, Shuffleboard, or Bochi Ball, or a small arts and crafts project. Construction challenges at Bosler prevented Quads residents from serving during Fall 2012, but they have more than made up the difference during the spring semester. Every Tuesday afternoon, Quads residents tutor local children and provide homework help. Throughout the 2012-13 year, “Neighbors to Neighbors” has brought together approximately 60 first year students in service to three different agencies. In addition to the weekly projects, each semester, the N2N Liaisons come together to host an “All Neighborhood Service Project.” In Fall 2012, the three neighborhoods served together in a community clean up hosted by Downtown Neighborhood Connection. For the spring semester, Thornwald Home and Bosler Library came together to host a “stories and celebration” afternoon in April. First year Dickinson students, children from Bosler Library, and residents of Thornwald spent a Saturday afternoon working on shadowboxes, learning about each other’s childhood, and celebrating with dessert.
Aside from the specific weekly projects and the all-neighborhood events, at the heart of the “Neighbors to Neighbors” program is upper-class students leading first year students in service while strengthening the connection with the Carlisle community for everyone involved.