Student organizations compete in donation drive

Mavs in Action will be contributing to the nationwide Socktober project this month with the help of recognized student organizations on campus.

The project began a few years ago with the goal of donating socks and undergarments for homeless shelters and food pantries. Olivia Hall, president of Mavs in Action, said Mavs in Action partners with RSOs, which adopt boxes for collecting items donated by the campus community. Whichever RSO manages to collect the most donation items wins $100 and a pizza party.

“For the whole month of October, those RSOs have a competition on who can get the most donated items,” Hall said.

Mavs in Action donates to Partners for Housing, CADA, and Connections Shelter. Hall said socks and undergarments are the target of donation because they tend to be the most overlooked in donations. Especially as the weather chills, socks are an essential item. 

“They are such a basic, especially when it is cold. So, I think just not having a lot of that is why this whole Socktober became a thing,” Hall said. “As winter comes, people can keep their feet warm.”

Socktober project was highly successful in October 2021 but experienced a dip in donations in 2022. The goal of this year is to bring that number of donations back to the level they were before.

“Our first year we had 850 pairs of socks, and last year was only 180,” Elise Sommer, social media chair of Mavs in Action, said. “So, it was a big change. We are trying to get back to the 850 again.”

“Last year was our first year when Mavs in Action was kind of getting started up again since Covid, so there were not a lot of members in the group,” Hall said. “And I know it was probably harder to get other groups to participate because numbers were down for all RSOs.”

Leyla Farah, vice president of Mavs in Action, said a goal for the future is to expand donations to other homeless shelters and food pantries in Mankato. Mavs in Action had their boxes ready for adoption within the month of September and saw an immediate demand for them as soon as October arrived. Sommer said she enjoys seeing the competition among the RSOs and how it motivates them to donate large amounts.

“I’ve seen posters all over campus of a group trying to get people to donate to their box,” Sommer said.

“One year there was like 300 donations from one group,” Farah said.

“I just like to see the campus come trying to make a difference and trying to serve those in the community. It’s nice to see all the different groups coming together for one cause,” Hall said.

Students can reach out to Mavs in Action via their Instagram account or MavCentral.

Header photo: Mavs in Action contribute to nationwide Socktober project this month with the help of student organizations on campus. (Courtesy Socktober Project)

Write to Tracy Swartzendruber at

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