Social Action Project returns stronger than ever


SAP poses for a photo after volunteering at “Poised for Success” (photo courtesy of Lizzie Patel).

Brianna Fonseca, Reporter

Last year, Sadie Madden ‘21 embarked upon a challenge stemmed from a simple Civics TAP project, which later evolved into a partnership with three other girls in her class, Lizzie Patel ‘21, Abby Hennessy’ 21 and Alexandra Pontrelli ‘21. She had to undergo a rigorous process of trial and error to transform her ideas into a club, which led to the revitalization of Social Action Project (SAP).

“Once you get older, you get more discouraged about making a difference because you feel your abilities are more limited,” Madden said. “SAP truly teaches that at any age you truly can make that difference. We’ve really gone above and beyond to show others what type of impact you can make in a club that allows you to volunteer and work with organizations that help so many people.”

The club originally started in hopes of branching off of the Thirst Project, a nonprofit organization that works with youth to end the global water crisis, Madden said. They conversed about these issues in Civics class, where students undertook their own elaborate projects to make a difference within the community. This began a conversation between classmates on how to transform this idea into something greater.

“We got denied originally when we first approached [student activities director Peter Geddeis] because our club was too specific and only focused on one charity,” Madden said. “We tried to change it a couple more times to get it approved, but we kept having the same problem. Eventually Mr. [Brian] Wolf approached us and told us there was a similar club in the past that hadn’t been active in a while, which is where we had our next idea.”

SAP was originally known as Students Against Drunk Driving, sponsor of Social Action Project, Wolf said. From there it was named Project Assist, which similar to SAP focused on helping students, and then it went to Social Action Club which was what it was before the girls got to it.

“It’s an ever growing club, constantly evolving, student centered, and stays local,” Wolf said. “It really encapsulates the community into a bigger picture and asks us how can we help it.”

SAP has participated in many fundraisers and organized multiple volunteering opportunities such as cleaning up forest preserves, working hand in hand with BEDS–a homeless shelter–and serving and making food for other local shelters, Wolf said. On average, the club has around 50 members in attendance who discuss and organize possible future events.

“There has definitely been a change in focus with SAP,” Geddeis said. “The club has a wider range of issues it wants to get involved in, and is not as single-idea focused as it was before, which are all beneficial and progressive things.”

The club meets on every second and fourth Tuesday of the month in room D131 at 6:30 p.m. and is still progressing as they get ready to appoint new South Campus student representatives and plan for upcoming fundraisers such as a clothing drive, more community clean ups, and hope to work with the Hinsdale Humane Society, Madden said. SAP hopes these volunteering opportunities open more doors for students in the future.