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Public Health Students Partner with Northside Youth and Senior Services Center in a Donation Drive


The Student Association for Public Health (SAPH) hosted a drive on March 27-28 to collect items of daily living for the Giving Hearts Community Closet, a new program being launched by the Northside Youth and Senior Services Center (NSYSSC) to provide assistance to members of the North St. Louis Community.

From left Leon Threat-NSYSSC Executive Director; Andrew Oberle-Public Health Doctoral Student Association Community-Centered Service Chair; Kim King- Manager of NSYSSC Outreach and Volunteer Engagement; Swati Patel-SAPH leader/MPH student; Audrey Yao-MPH student; Edward Ignaczak-MPH student; Chris Hopkins- SAPH leader/MPH student; Andrea Hoppert- SAPH leader/MPH student

From left are Leon Threat, NSYSSC executive director; Andrew Oberle, Public Health Doctoral Student Association Community, centered service chair; Kim King, manager of NSYSSC outreach and volunteer engagement; Swati Patel, SAPH leader/MPH student; Audrey Yao, MPH student; Edward Ignaczak, MPH student; Chris Hopkins, SAPH leader/MPH student;  and Andrea Hoppert, SAPH leader/MPH student. Submitted Photo.

SAPH leadership/Master of Public Health students Swati Patel, Andrea Hopper and Chris Hopkins worked with Public Health Doctoral Student Association (PHDSA) Community-Centered Service Chair Andrew Oberle and NSYSSC leadership to organize the event.

The drive was held in the Salus Center parking lot and hundreds of dollars’ worth of donations were collected for the Community Closet, which will go directly to at-need community members in North St. Louis. Throughout the weekend, SAPH members were joined by NSYSSC staffers Kim King, manager of outreach and volunteer engagement, and Leon Threat, executive director.

"It went very well, especially in the pandemic circumstances we are in," Patel said. "It was an honor to work with Kim King and Andrew Oberle to put it together and I am so happy we could help lift off the Giving Hearts Closet at NSYSSC and help the community.”

NSYSSC has supported the St. Louis community since its founding in 1973. NSYSSC provides programs to members of the community that focus on youth success, senior mobility and nutrition, access to health, and the basic needs of both youth and seniors. NSYSSC aspires to ensure the equitable distribution of resources to meet the basic needs of youth and seniors in predominantly low-income and black neighborhoods in St. Louis City.