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Student Body at Hardin-Simmons University Set To Mass Text on Connecting Caring Community Project

By Janlyn Thaxton



Brad Carter of Connecting Caring Communities says he has watched as college students have cleaned up some 400,000 pounds of trash over the last five years in the North Park neighborhood just north of Hardin-Simmons University. Carter also says he has seen college students continue to visit senior adults in renewal neighborhoods even after they graduate from school. “These are just some of the reasons I love community renewal,” says Carter.Tomorrow Carter will be at HSU to watch as the entire student body mass-votes by way of texting for the project that will help expand community renewal in Abilene.Tuesday is the last day to vote in the Pepsi Refresh Project that could put Abilene in a position to receive the $250,000 grant. Each month Pepsi gives away two $250,000 grants to organizations that get the most votes for their proposed project by way of texting, voting on the Pepsi Refresh website, and using Facebook. For the month of August, the Connecting Caring Communities project has moved from 456th place up to fifth place in the race for the grant money.Carter says if the Abilene community can push the project to number one or number two by tomorrow night, the money will go toward the opening of more Friendship Houses in vulnerable neighborhoods and help to build sustainable, energy efficient homes for low-income families.To help the effort, HSU students will participate in a mass voting for the project during tomorrow’s weekly Chapel service. The voting will take place in Behrens Auditorium at 9:30 a.m. Last week, 550 new freshmen and transfer students did a mass texting during an official ceremony welcoming them to the campus. New students also participated in mass voting each day during New Student Orientation activities. Last Tuesday the project had moved to ninth place, in part due to student voting. Today the project is in at number five. In addition to the mass student voting, emails from faculty and staff are flying across the campus reminding employees at HSU that they can vote three times each day using texting, Facebook, or the Pepsi Refresh website.Last Saturday HSU students participated in laying the bricks for the first energy efficient houses being built in the neighborhood just north of campus. Students will have plenty more bricks to help lay if the CCC can snag the Pepsi grant. Tomorrow is the last day to vote.HSU senior Michael Nixon and Tyler Chapin, a ministry student from Cedar Park, TX, help to lay the first bricks in the energy efficient homes Connecting Caring Communities is building near the HSU campus.

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