The first week of 2015’s winter semester saw the international student community collect a total of €1,413. The medical and dental students, with the help of other students from the veterinary University in Kosice ran fundraisers and collected donations over the ‘freshers week’. A select group of international students were responsible for the charity drive not only within the University, but also outside of it. The founding members include Chris Cordell, Sarah Mullarkey, Arunthan Perinpasivam, Marian Julius Muschiol and Max Seabrook.
‘As a collective we have been working together to not only create a better experience for students in Kosice but also others around the world. Within the faculty, we have created initiatives such as a buddy system for new students, arranging extra teaching opportunities and the philanthropic events discussed. ’ says Sarah Mullarkey, one of the organizers.
This group of students and year representatives; Joaquim Ribeiro Ventosa and Ania Kittowska raised the money within lectures and accepted personal donations in their free time. ‘A ‘freshers’ night was also organised in the Tabačka night-club in aid of MSF. The event combined not only a chance for the 1st years to meet but also raise money for a fantastic cause.
The general attitude within the student body was one of empathy and the students were more than generous once they heard about it. A large proportion of the students were really affected by recent images of Syrian Children being washed ashore and of the entire situation. ‘It is difficult to watch anyone being displaced and rejected by a country and a lot of the international student body identified with the images. It evoked a sense of responsibility within the community and we are willing to assist in helping to ensure those affected get the care they need. ’ adds Chris Cordell, who also mentions several hundreds of students joined this initiative.
‘The money raised was donated on the 21st of September, the international day of peace, to Doctors Without Borders/ Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). MSF provide medical aid, food, water and more to the refugees in the Greek and Balkans areas, who have been forced out of their homes due to war and human rights violations. Their influence is ongoing, not only helping with physical scars but also the mental ones thanks to the upheaval and strife. It is great to see so many international students coming together to work for the betterment of humanity. It is these kind of activities that will hopefully inspire others to do the same in future, continuing to help society as a whole. ’ closes S. Mullarkey.