Mercer to Conduct Annual ‘Be a Good NeighBear’ Service Day this Saturday


MACON – MerServe, Mercer's student-run service leadership board for the Macon campus, will conduct the University's annual “Be a Good NeighBear” service day Saturday in partnership with local outreach organizations and neighborhood Shalom Zones.

“Be a Good NeighBear” serves as the kickoff event for a number of service opportunities offered to students through Mercer's Center for Community Engagement over the course of the academic year.

More than 300 students, along with faculty, staff and their families, are expected to participate in this event.

Shalom Zones bring together business, civic, governmental and religious organizations to revitalize neighborhoods. Macon is the first municipality in the U.S. to embrace Communities of Shalom on such a scale.

Additional partners include the Fuller Center for Housing, Brave Meadows Therapeutic Riding Center, Rebuilding Macon and Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to participate in my first 'Be a Good NeighBear' service day, but the work does not end here,” said Lauren Shinholster, the University's new coordinator for community engagement. “'Be a Good NeighBear' shines a light on critical issues in our area, which are best resolved through sustainable, collaborative efforts. We hope that both our students and Macon residents leave 'NeighBear' feeling valued, inspired and empowered. We thank our community partners for this opportunity.”

Volunteers will gather on Cruz Plaza at 8 a.m. for a brief presentation before dispersing throughout the community. They are expected to return to campus between noon and 1 p.m.

MerServe is sponsored by the Center for Community Engagement, a clearinghouse for volunteer services at Mercer. For more information, visit