Carnival Fosters Rewarding Connections

Dianda Giles, Staff Writer

Project Open Hands (POH) hosted a Halloween carnival on October 14 in the Campolindo multi-use room. The event featured various activities and treats for all.

¨Project Open Hands is a very rewarding club. We get to give back to our community and focus on an aspect of life we care about,¨ said club co-president and senior Kelly Ruane.

POH partnered with Sea Serpents, a swim team that gives 1-on-1 coaching to swimmers with disabilities. Additionally, the club teamed up with the Campolindo men’s water polo team, who also volunteered at the event. Over 20 members of the varsity and junior varsity teams spent time working the event.

Coloring, face painting, cookie decorating, cornhole, and many more Halloween-themed activities were available for carnival participants. In addition to activities, the club played music and served pizza to over 200 attendees.

Club president and senior Ava Charlesworth saw the event as a valuable learning experience for students. ¨The carnival was a great way to connect students with people who have disabilities. I think that lots of students at Campo don’t know how to interact with members of the special needs community,¨ said Charlesworth.

The carnival gave some members of the team a new outlook on their interactions with community members with disabilities. ¨It was really fun to hang out with the Sea Serpents and their families. They’re just like everyone else,¨ said freshman Owen Younger.

The club is currently in the process of organizing future events with the same goal of inclusion and plans on hosting a basketball game with the Campolindo basketball team and Mount Diablo Warriors, a basketball team open to Bay Area athletes with disabilities.