At the UB School of Social Work, we believe in the power and value of community service, both for the individuals we help and the students who give up their time to make a difference.
Our students do just that as part of Developing Relationships through Empowerment, Advocacy and Motivation, or DREAM, a volunteer program the school created in 2004.
DREAM began with a mission of providing families support for short-term success in their living environment and long-term success in our greater community. The program has since expanded in scope to provide support, friendship and advocacy to individuals of all ages.
The UB DREAM Team currently works with two Buffalo-based agencies:
Volunteers join residents of this assisted living center for a range of activities such as bingo, crafts and music, and spend time with residents individually to provide much-needed support and friendship.
Vive is the largest refugee shelter in the United States. DREAM volunteers are able to interact with refugees and asylum-seekers of all ages by participating in various group activities, such as crafts and yoga.
The DREAM program began with “DREAM Night,” a weekly event held at a transitional housing facility that offers support and services for homeless, single parents and their children.
Participants enjoyed movies, games, food and warm conversation with residents, all with the idea of providing residents with a communication outlet in a comfortable setting, while fostering community spirit.
In 2006, DREAM Night transitioned to a successful biweekly enrichment program that offered residents GED and other educational assistance.