Student honored for charitable work
By Ashley Clark
The Daily Cougar
A UH chemical engineering junior recently received the American Institution
of Public Service award for his efforts in Operation Education Without
Borders, a project that helps underprivileged children in Mexico.
Russell Crake, III, was nominated for the award by KPRC-TV and flown
to Washington, D.C. to accept the award. But it was his girlfriend that
made certain Crake was noticed by the television station.
"My girlfriend saw that KPRC had an award for community service and
she called and nominated me," Crake said. "I could not believe that I won.
Then, I was chosen from five recipients to go to D.C."
Crake said his passion for community service began when he was young
and underprivileged himself.
"When I was younger my parents were divorced and my mom could not speak
English very well so we struggled," Crake said. "It was very hard. I remember
one Thanksgiving, the fire department brought us food and ever since then
I liked community service."
Crake did not actually get to participate in community service until
he attended Bellaire High School.
"I was inducted into the National Honor Society and we were required
to do community service," Crake said. "It was not a chore to me and I loved
doing it ever since then."
Crake's love for community service is what drove him and the Hispanic-based
Omega Delta Phi Fraternity to help underprivileged students in Mexico.
"I thought that this project was the best opportunity to help Hispanics
personally," said Crake, the community service chairman for his fraternity.
In order to raise money, Omega Delta Phi set up bins in the classroom
of local middle and elementary schools and served 300 students in Mexico.
"We collected broken pencils and notebooks," Crake said. "We filled
150 boxes of school supplies and rented a Ryder truck. We drove down to
Mexico and gave the students the supplies."
The fraternity is also participating in UH's annual Operation School
Supplies and plans to participate in Operation Education Without Borders
again next year.