Members of URI’s Student Philanthropy Council (SPC) celebrated its second annual “Opening Doors Day,” holding doors for other students and spreading goodwill and school spirit yesterday.

Throughout the day, around 25 council members stood at the entrances to various campus buildings and opened them for anyone that passed. Students entering or exiting Swan, Chafee, Washburn, the CBLS or the Memorial Union received a blue and white lollipop and a greeting of “Happy Opening Doors Day!” Council members also asked students to continue the good deed by holding a door open for someone else and to keep spreading the word.

SPC Chair Hannah Zawia was among those holding doors at the Union during the afternoon and spoke passionately about the initiative. “Opening Doors Day is a day we created to spread positivity and the spirit of philanthropy around campus,” she said. “We wanted to convince everyone to give back to the community by showing students that [other students] care about them.”

Zawia also spread word about the SPC and its goals throughout the day. “We plan events around campus to spread philanthropy in the community, so students will learn to give back to URI,” she said. “Our main mantra is really ‘Students helping students.’”

The SPC’s most prominent initiative is raising money for the Students First Fund. Established last year, the fund provides financial assistance to students in times of crisis and unexpected hardship. “So any URI student who has, say, a family member far away pass away and they don’t have enough money to go fly out home and see them or if they live off campus and are having health troubles, they can apply for a grant,” Zawia said. “It’s really for URI students who are in need of financial help and we take care of that.”

The SPC’s primary fundraising event will be held on National Philanthropy Day on Nov. 16, where they will collect donations during the URI men’s basketball game. The council is also planning an “I <3 URI” week in the spring, which will focus on demonstrating school spirit, as well as spreading positivity and philanthropy.

The council invites any students who held doors for others during the day to share their school spirit on the URISPC Facebook page or to tweet @uri_spc.

Donations can be made to the Students First Fund via the URI Foundation website.