Baylor United for UNICEF plans to make a change

Baylor United for UNICEF becomes official at a student organization chartering ceremony on Tuesday. From left to right: Vice-President Clarissa Anderson, Social Chair Julieth Reyes, President David Espinoza and one of the club's advisers Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Studies Carrolle Kamperman. Photo credit: Courtesy Photo

By Rylee Seavers | Staff Writer

Baylor United for UNICEF received its official charter from Baylor Student Activities on Tuesday and is looking for members for the 2017-18 academic year.

San Antonio junior and president David Espinoza, El Paso junior and vice president Clarissa Anderson and Mansfield senior and secretary Taylor Strong are the three founders of the organization and are all members of the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core.

Espinoza said BIC teachers have learned about world cultures and the issues that affect those cultures. They decided to start an organization to support UNICEF because it is one of the largest humanitarian organizations that works to support human rights.

“We want to make sure to bring those issues to the Waco community to educate people here,” Espinoza said.

UNICEF works to give a voice to those who do not have one, Strong said, which is usually children and sometimes women. Students who are concerned about the rights and safety of women and children around the world should consider joining Baylor United for UNICEF, Strong said.

“By bringing the organization to Baylor, we are trying to get the Waco community and the Baylor community more involved with that,” Strong said.

Espinoza said the founders of the organization were inspired by Baylor’s caring community and wanted the chance to be leaders and to provide other students with opportunities to be leaders.

Baylor United for UNICEF does have officer positions, and members of the organization will have opportunities to lead task forces that would oversee planning of events and fundraisers, Anderson said.

Strong said they hope to bring guest lecturers to campus, view documentaries, hold fundraisers and participate in volunteer work as an organization.

The organization is open to anyone who wants to join, and active membership in the organization will be determined by a point system, Anderson said. A student must receive 70 percent of the available points in a semester, which can be earned by attending meetings and planning events, to be considered an active member, Anderson said.

A student is required to be an active member to run for a leadership position within Baylor United for UNICEF, Anderson said.

Anderson also said a benefit to joining an organization that is just beginning is having have an opportunity to be a part of the growth and later look back on their contribution knowing they helped start something great.

If Baylor United for UNICEF can register with UNICEF, it will be the 189th UNICEF organization in North America, Espinoza said.

Baylor United for UNICEF will hold an interest meeting at 5 p.m. on Thursday in 102 Morrison.