HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – The University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM) Office of Inclusion and Multicultural Engagement (IME) leaders announced a special Homecoming Day of Service project.

The event, titled #HashtagLunchbag, is set for October 13, from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. at the IME multipurpose space in the University’s Hub building. Organizers said bag lunches will be made by students, faculty and staff. Those lunches will be provided to community partners who serve the homeless population in the Hattiesburg area.

Materials for each lunch will be provided by donations from campus and community partners, including Aramark, Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, and Winn-Dixie. The items will include a fully dressed sandwich, a bag of chips, a piece of fruit, cookies and a water bottle.

“It is important because it gives USM students, faculty and staff a chance to serve the community their institution is surrounded by,” Christina Bracey, IME Events and Volunteerism Coordinator said. “It teaches an individual about the importance of how one small act can have a big impact on the lives of people around you. It brings people together and creates a sense of pride for service among people who may be different but are working toward the same goal. There is instant gratification when anyone participates in this type of service event.”

According to Bracey, there are about five different community partners that the university works with each year who serve the homeless population in the area. Those community partners include Christian Services, Aldersgate Mission, and Edwards Street Fellowship Thrift Store.

“We hosted Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week last November, and it was a success. So, we will be back in the fall to continue serving our homeless community in whatever way we can,” Bracey said.

IME hopes to compile up to 1,000 lunches for the October 13 event.