Jeans for a Cause donates over $600 to SafeNet Erie

Samantha Weber, Editor in Chief

Mercyhurst Staff Senate donated more than $600 to SafeNet Erie for the fall 2022 Jeans for a Cause fundraiser. The faculty and staff at Mercyhurst have the opportunity to participate in the Jeans For A Cause campaign. Each semester they hold a variety of fundraisers to raise money for a specific charity in the Erie community.
Every semester, the executive committee of the Staff Senate selects five nonprofit organizations that operate in the Erie community.
Those five organizations are then voted on by the entire staff senate and the organization with the most votes is the recipient of whatever is fundraised that semester. SafeNet was the one that was selected for fall 2022.
SafeNet provides domestic violence, abuse advocacy and support.
They use the slogan “reclaim your life.” On their website, there is a hotline number to call if you are in a crisis and information about the services they provide including, safety planning, counseling, support groups, legal advocacy and domestic violence education and advocacy.
There is also a shelter with 45 beds where people can stay for up to 30 days to give them an alternate housing option to get back on their feet.
SafeNet has helped countless people get out of dangerous situations and reclaim their life for themselves.
This is an important cause that is fueled by donations and every little bit helps so this was a great organization for the Staff Senate to select as the recipient of the donation.
Jeans For A Cause has been a Mercyhurst tradition for a long time. During Thomas Gamble’s administration, which was from 2006-2015, staff and faculty began wearing jeans and MU gear and donating the money to local causes. Eventually, it was incorporated into the Staff Senate to be run by faculty and staff.
The main fundraiser is when staff and administrators are encouraged to wear jeans and Mercyhurst gear if they donate $2 to the fund. Justin Ross, Ph.D., the President of the Staff Senate said, “It’s a bit like ‘casual Friday’ turned to good use!”
There was also a Chili Cook-Off for the staff where several people made their own chili and brought it in and then anyone could try all the different types of chili and vote on their favorite if they donated $5. The event in early February raised nearly $200 for the cause.
This year’s winners were Vicki Marzka for Best Traditional, Megan Fluegel for Best Nontraditional, a tie between Shelly Berlin and Justin Ross for Best Texas, Jenell Patton for Best Vegetarian and Megan Fluegel for Best Overall. Each winner received a trophy!
The next fundraiser that the organization will be participating in will most likely be a basket raffle in April. If for some reason this is not able to be achieved, then the next fundraiser will be in the fall.