Step Forward Day Recap: Women's Swimming & Diving
Sep 9, 2013
MALIBU, Calif. - Step Forward Day celebrated its 25th Anniversary at Pepperdine this past Saturday, and the Waves' athletic teams were out in full force serving the community.
Thousands of students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends, as well as dozens of campus organizations, including classes, dorms, fraternities, sororities, and clubs, came together to assist nonprofit organizations, schools, churches and parks throughout Southern California.
Step Forward Day began in 1988 when two Pepperdine students recognized the need for volunteers in the local community and sought to encourage service among their peers. The projects began as small acts of service from helping to repair homes of local senior citizens to planting gardens at Webster Elementary School. Today the annual event has grown not only across Southern California, but also to communities nationwide as Pepperdine alumni step forward to help.
The women's swimming and diving team was sent to the L.A. Food Bank. Senior Stephanie Ertl provided this account of her team's experience:
"This year for Step Forward Day, the Swim and Dive Team was given the privilege to volunteer at the L.A. Food Bank. Our job was to inspect and package donated food goods that are shipped off to help others in need.
"The atmosphere of the food bank was not at all what we expected; it was better. The volunteers there were very sweet and had a great sense of humor. The people were not only inviting, but the warehouse had bumping music playing in every storage room. Being in this type of environment and working with your friends made volunteering so much fun. It was awesome knowing that we were able to help out the community all together in a big way.
"Our team as a whole was like a machine. We pounded out the work and got a lot accomplished. The entire experience was humbling and we are already looking forward for other opportunities to help out our community."