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On May 1, on both sides of the tables, people were ready to do crafts with the art supplies set in the middle. There were no empty chairs as participants helped one another understand the process of creating a flower bean arts and crafts project. This was all part of the student-run organization, Hands.

Hands allows students to connect with those in the area with special needs, experience life from all different perspectives and make new friends. .

“We hope that people interact with others and get to work with people you wouldn’t get to normally,” said Aidan O’Brien, a senior studying psychology. “It’s a very Christ-like experience to come to these events and interact with people you wouldn’t normally interact with.”

Students connected with one another, discussing their stories and talking about their day. Some already know each other from past Hands activities. As they move stacks of bins that have supplies from one to another.

Each week, Hands organizes new projects and activities that anyone can help with. There are no requirements to join, so anyone can show up and get involved in the program.

“My favorite thing we made last semester was lava lamp water bottles,” said Sidney Davis, a junior studying special education. We made them with oil, water and antacid tablets.”

Students said their favorite parts of the activity were the social interactions and connections made through this program.

“It’s an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything,” said Justine Lyons, a freshman studying health care administration. “The people here are special, and they have encouraged me to be helpful and kind.”

The event is on Wednesdays from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Gordon B. Hinckley Building room 271 and is not just for those with special needs but for everyone who wants a new connection or friendship.

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