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Westminster hosts annual Alternative Gift Market

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Posted on Monday, November 1, 2021

This holiday season, students and faculty at Westminster College are hosting the 18th annual Alternative Gift Market, a nontraditional way for sharing meaningful gifts.

The market, to be held from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 4 and Friday, Nov. 5, allows students, alumni, families and friends to give a gift that inspires change through regional and international social service agencies.
Westminster College First-Year Inquiry classes, including students in the Civic Engagement and Global Engagement Fellows programs, along with Dr. Helen Boylan’s Inquiry class and the Rotaract student organization, will showcase their research to advocate for various global and regional causes.

Shoppers can explore presentations about food insecurity, environmental preservation, health care, educational access and more through Zoom presentations on Thursday, Nov. 4, at  Zoom presentation links will also be available on the website.  Presentations on Friday, Nov. 5 will occur in McKelvey Campus Center’s second and third floor atrium areas.  

“As global citizens, our annual Westminster Alternative Gift Market offers students an opportunity to support agencies focused on creating sustainable solutions to global issues.  Through research focused on self-selected causes, students rethink consumerism and increase their understanding of civic responsibility by advocating for these vital causes,” explained Dr. Charlene Klassen Endrizzi, professor of literacy education and event coordinator.  

Shoppers can make donations to specific organizations on Westminster’s Alternative Gift Market site between Thursday, Nov. 4, and Friday, Nov. 12. Cash donations can be delivered to Westminster College’s Office of Faith and Spirituality, 223 McKelvey Campus Center, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 5.

Some of the organizations students are supporting include Water for South Sudan, Burma Humanitarian Mission, Ethiopia Reads, Bicycles for Humanity, The Quixote Center, Hungarian Evangelical Fellowship, Sustainable Pittsburgh, Three Rivers Water Keepers, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, The Pittsburgh Foundation and the Bair Foundation. Additionally, the Silk Road Market and Trades of Hope will join the market this year.

Westminster College’s market supports Alternative Gifts International—a non-profit organization which inspires support for humanitarian and environmental causes—and represents service learning for its students.

The virtual alternative gift market is open to the public. For more information, contact Klassen Endrizzi at  or 724-946-7189.