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Advocating for a

Better World Spartans Make a Difference

By Kaitlynn Knopp


ver y ye ar in t he U. S . , it is e st imate d t hat ne arly t wo mi l l i on tons of excess me d ic a l suppl i e s go to waste. Ever y d ay at M SU, t he re’s a g roup of students work ing to do s ome t hi ng ab out t hat. Advo c ates at MSU has b e e n an a c t ive org ani z at ion s ince spr i ng s e me ste r of 2011. Accord ing to ps ychol o g y s e n i or Ad am R o ebu ck , fou nde r of t he org an izat ion , t heir main go a l is to re c ove r and re dist r ibute ext r a me di c a l suppl i e s f rom t he U.S. to he a lt h ce nte rs i n Gu ate ma l a and Hait i. “By col l e c t ing t he s e suppl i e s , not on ly are we abl e to re du c e t he amou nt of waste here in ou r c ou nt r y, but we are a ls o abl e to help t ho s e i ndiv i du a ls i n ot her cou nt r ies w ho are l e ss for tu nate,” R o ebuck s aid. “Amer ic a t a kes for g r ante d t hat mo st of us have a hospit a l w it hi n a 3 0 m i nute dr ive, and a ls o, once we ge t to t hat ho spit a l, t he y have a l l t he e qu ipme nt and me dic ine ne cess ar y to help us ,” Matt D w yer, genet ics s en i or and t he chi e f op erat ing of f icer, s ai d. “Imag i ne goi ng to a me d ic a l f a ci lit y w he re t he y k now w hat t he y must d o to help you, but t he y c an’t b e c aus e t he y d on’t have w hat t he y ne e d.” Advo c ates at MSU is st r iv i ng to change t hat. »


So far.. Collectively, AWH and Advocates at MSU have recovered over 15,000 pounds of medical supplies from becoming waste buried in landfills.

1 August 29, 2011


Behind the Scenes Advocates at MSU was formed as an affiliate of Advocates for World Health (AWH), a nonprofit organization based out of Tampa, Fla. Currently, Advocates at MSU has about 20 members, but when including members of AWH across the country, Roebuck said there are a few hundred working toward the same goal. To achieve their goal, Roebuck said the first step is establishing connections. “These connections are mostly made through friends, families, and contacts of individuals within our organization. They are also made by contacting staff at hospitals and medical centers,” he said. “Once the connections have been made, we inform our connections of what we hope to accomplish. If any of our connections have any medical supplies they are willing to donate, we arrange a pick-up of these donations and store them until we have enough funds to ship them to our target countries.” So far, Advocates at MSU has not yet sent a shipment, but Dwyer said they are in the process of it. Roebuck said they have collected a wide variety of supplies to donate, including crutches, exam tables, gauze bandages, blood pressure monitors, infant incubators, stethoscopes. They’ve also collected hospital furniture, such as beds, cribs, and mattresses. Roebuck said sending a single shipment--a 40-foot container--to Guatemala or Haiti could cost between $2,000 and $10,000, depending on the weight of the shipment. To date, Advocates at MSU has raised more than $2,000. “We are waiting to collect enough money and supplies to send a decent size shipment,” Roebuck said.


It is my hope this

idea can continue to be advocated enough


to make the world a

Email: Facebook: Advocates at MSU Website: Meetings: Every Thursday @ 6 p.m. in 104 Berkey Hall

better place. —Adam Roebuck

Making a Difference


Collectively, AWH and Advocates at MSU have recovered over 15,000 pounds of medical supplies from becoming waste buried in landfills, redistributed over $600,000 worth of medical supplies to Guatemala and Haiti, and coordinated six humanitarian aid trips to distribute medical supplies in Guatemala, Roebuck said. Both organizations are striving and succeeding in benefiting countries that don’t have the resources to benefit themselves. Together, they’re changing the world. “By reaching out to our peers, friends and family and explaining to them the importance of what we advocate, I believe we can truly start to make a difference,” Roebuck said. “Every movement starts with an idea. That idea is then advocated by those who believe it. It is my hope this idea can continue to be advocated enough to make the world a better place.” 2 August 29, 2011

Ing Magazine: Dec/Jan Issue