Community Service

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** Rake Across DeKalb 2014 will not take place. The SILD office will consider revisiting this community service event in Fall 2015. ** 

Rake Across DeKalb sends volunteers from the NIU community (students, faculty, and staff) into the DeKalb community to assist area residents with lawn clean-up in preparation for winter. Participation is free for both volunteers and residents wishing to add to our list of project sites. 

Information for NIU Volunteers:
There is separate registration for Team Leaders and Team members. Volunteers may register as individuals or in teams of 5 or less. Large student organizations looking to get involved must register multiple volunteer teams. 

Team Leaders: Each Team MUST have a Team Leader (primary contact person up until and the day of the event) in order for a Team to be valid. Teams can contain no more than 5 volunteers. If your organization is large, you will need to register multiple Teams and Team Leaders. 

Team Members and Individuals: If you are registering with a team, please consult with your Team Leader for further instructions. If you would like to sign up as an individual, you may register under the 'NIU Cares' team.

Volunteers will receive their assignments as well as any supplies they might need during check-in. A state-issued ID (ie. driver's license) will be needed from the Team Leader in order for the team to receive their supplies. Supplies can be dropped off at the check-in location following the event. 

Information for Community Members: 
If you would like a paper registration form instead, please print this registration form and mail or fax it to the contact listed on the form. Because of logistical factors, including transportation and the event timeline, sites in DeKalb and Sycamore will be given first priority. Residents are expected to provide at least one rake per volunteer requested.

Volunteers may be available to assist with additional outdoor tasks (ie. mulching, painting, gathering firewood, etc.); however, requests must be made in writing on the registration form and must be approved prior to the event.

*Note that campus initiatives that organize campus volunteers (mainly students) to perform a variety of service projects throughout the greater DeKalb Community will not have project sites that are private property of Northern Illinois University faculty, staff, or students.

Giving Opportunities:
As Rake Across DeKalb has gained popularity, the coordinators are anticipating a high level of participation for this event. Supplies will be needed to ensure all of our area residents can receive the assistance they need. How can you help? We are especially in need of rakes (plastic or aluminum), work gloves, lawn & leaf bags, and heavy-duty trash bags. Gift cards are also welcome! Donations (new or lightly-used) can be dropped off at room 150 of the Campus Life Building at NIU. If you need to make arrangements for pick-up of supplies, please call 815-753-6511 or email We appreciate your support of this 'communiversity' effort.