Devils Spark Change inspires student involvement at ASU

The service organization has addressed issues such as domestic violence and homelessness

In August 2017, Samantha Mooney, now a justice studies junior at ASU, looked at other clubs on campus and felt that none did the kind of targeted service that she felt was necessary in the community. 

Now, less than a year later, Devils Spark Change has made service trips to Catalina Island and Prescott with more travel plans in the future.

The organization is a student-run club whose main goal is to effect change in their communities and country. They want students to become better leaders, citizens and, most importantly, catalysts for change, according to their blog.

“The most important reason we started it was there were not a lot of groups focusing on specific social issues," Mooney said. "It is not just serving. It is also learning why you are doing this."

In the club's short history, members have concentrated on several social issues such as conserving the environment, domestic violence and homelessness. Through their work, they aim to raise awareness about these issues and help those affected by them.

Over MLK Day Weekend, Devils Spark Change went to Prescott and worked with the group Stepping Stones to aid victims of domestic violence.  

Mooney said that the service trips provide an opportunity for club members to gain experience in an area of social service that they may not have encountered before.

“(On) our domestic violence trip, pretty much nobody knew anything about domestic violence,” Mooney said. “The coolest thing is watching the participants learn and grow in that area and is influential and impacts their lives.” 

The group's success in Prescott prompted them to plan another trip there over spring break to continue their work with Stepping Stones.

“We decided to head back to Prescott because of the high impact our group had with Stepping Stones,” Mooney said. “It is a fun and affordable option, and we will be helping with their shelters and thrift stores.”

Katja Klosterman, a biochemistry sophomore, said the group looks at the social issues that are most relevant at the time to choose where they do their trips.

“We really just started looking at the community needs and what needs to be brought into awareness,” Klosterman said. “We also look into what locations we can go to and what nonprofits we can work with.” 

Carly Golding, a sustainability sophomore who has been on a few service trips with Devils Spark Change, said the group is "really structured on how they can be as impactful as possible." 

“They really make sure members get the most out of the service and you are giving back to the community as much as possible," she said.


Reach the reporter at smpere10@asu.edu or follow @therealsperez on Twitter. 

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