Serving It Up, On and Off the Volleyball Court

By Madison Wong ’15

At SHC, our mission is “Enter to Learn, Leave to Serve.” This past weekend the girls varsity volleyball teams of St. Mary’s College High School, Justin Siena High School, Christian Brothers High School and Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory came together to help serve the community of the Sacramento area in the 2nd Annual Serve It Up Founders Classic Volleyball Tournament, pun intended. Serve It Up was created to bring our Lasallian sister schools together to serve the community, share meals together and compete in the sport we are passionate about.

We had the opportunity to serve at different locations such as the Sacramento Zoo, Front Street Animal Shelter, American River Parkway, District 1 Parks and Habitat for Humanity. After service, we all came together for a meal and reflected on the work and its effect on each other and the people we served. This tournament, as described by SHC team manager Aaron Adams ’15, “is a great way to make a difference in the community and at the same time, meet other players and coaches that have the same love for volleyball. You get the chance to interact with your opponents in a different setting and learn that they are not your enemies, but are people just like you.”

My group performed service at the Sacramento Zoo. We were brought to an isolated area of the zoo and swept dirt and cleaned up the leaves for an event for those who sponsor and donate to the zoo. The ladies and I were a bit frustrated as to why we were sweeping up dirt and raking leaves off of the ground instead of working with animals. We worked through our struggles, however, got the work done and at the end we fed the giraffes!

The type of service that we did was considered “behind-the-scenes.” Maia So-Holloway ’16 talks about her experience: “The community service aspect of this tournament really opened my eyes to the whole spectrum of service. While working at Habitat for Humanity, an organization known for rebuilding houses, we stacked carpet squares to sell to the general public. This job, as little as it may have seemed, was as necessary as the jobs building walls of houses.” The experience of being able serve those who need our help was very refreshing, and it was exciting to do it with other girls who share the same mission and work ethic.

Volleyball teams unite in service at the Front Street Animal Shelter.

Serve It Up holds many lessons and themes as well as high level competition on the court. We build relationships with girls from our sister schools and work to create a better community. Though the service work is more “behind-the-scenes” than direct, we do the job with our whole hearts because someone needs our help. It benefits all, whether its the person who is doing the service or receiving the service. The competitive play after service is always enjoyable. The day after our service projects, we competed against our new friends and the SHC Girls Varsity Volleyball Team came out on top! Rachel Chow ’15 says, “It was a privilege to play against other Lasallian schools and have a lot of fun at the same time.” Playing volleyball is what brought all of us together in the first place. There was no better way to end the weekend than playing our hearts out.

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