Community Service and Youth Examples

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REALLY PROUD OF OUR KIDS! (What one Oregon program accomplished!)

Thanks to the ideas on this website, these are some of the things we’ve done this year!

1. We had an OLD EYE-GLASS COLLECTION and took them to the local eye clinic (They were happy for the donations) We collected 250 pairs!

2.  We’ve gotten to know the ELDERLY in our neighborhood by “adopting” a few. Our senior neighbors have visited once a month since October. We make cookies and brownies the day before, and then play cards and games. (This is a Middle school program) We’ve gotten to know them as friends…the local paper came and did a “human interest” story on this.

3. In November we recognized “WORLD KINDNESS WEEK” and did a couple things that are in the Kindness Category.

4. In December we collected personal items for a homeless shelter and “ADOPTED A FAMILY”. The father died with no insurance; Mom was left with five young children. We put together a great food basket and toys for them and will also do Easter baskets.

5. We DESIGN MONTHLY WORD SEARCH GAMES  for the grade school program down the block. We’ve been doing that since November.

6. April with EARTH DAY–we cleaned up the grounds of the school and collect coins for the Rain forest.

7. In May, we “ADOPTED FIFTH GRADERS” to make their transition to middle school easier. We went there once a week for that month–

8. The end of May, we met  on a Saturday and held a “pledged walk” to raise money for theLOCAL ANIMAL SHELTER…

It was the best year we ever had! The kids were constantly busy with all their community projects–as well as doing all the fun things that all kids like to do! At this time, we’ve decided to continue the “word-search” and “Senior visits” for continueing school years!

The Supervisor of our program, who loves everything we are doing, has come in and given the kids some guidelines and ways to get the best results in volunteering at the grade school program. (To make it a good experience for all! ) Thanks for all the ideas to work with! Penguin and Gang in Oregon!

♥ Thank you Penguin! It sounds like you had a great year, great kids, and a fantastic program! Barb Shelby


Students at YMCA school-age child care centers in Cupertino and Sunnyvale, California, are collecting new and gently used jackets for children whose families cannot afford winter jackets…

In Monessen, Pennsylvania, afterschool programs at the Mon Valley YMCA and the Lemoyne Center will benefit from Carol for a Cause,” a fundraising effort started years ago by local residents who sang Christmas carols to passer-bys at Salvation Army collection areas. The volunteers found that singing carols increased the amount of the donations…

In Pocatello, Idaho, students in the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program started early and reached out to a unique service group. Four programs partnered with the Pocatello Kennel Club to provide holiday goodies for Operation Military Care K-9…

In Missoula, Montana, the Flagship afterschool program is quickly becoming a key contributor to the city’s annual New Year’s Eve alcohol-free celebration, “First Night Missoula.”…

Chickens, ducks and pot-bellied pigs have been among the guests at Catalina Foothills area afterschool programs, reports the Arizona Daily Star. The visits are sponsored by the Therapeutic Ranch for Animals and Kids afterschool program which strives to educate children about therapy animals so they can eventually accompany the animals to hospitals, homeless shelters and other sites…

Bountiful fall leaves were no match for the youngsters at the Partnership Park After-School Program in Jackson. Although jumping in leaf piles was part of the fun, the main activity for students was their cleaning a Jackson neighborhood to help older residents by raking their leaves…

The “Bright Futures After School Service-Learning Club” from Lincoln Elementary School in Michigan, built and facilitate an outdoor classroom event…

They facilitated activities at stations, which include meteorology, flower beds, composting and bird feeders. Youth led lessons on comparing weather data using tools such as a thermometer and rain gauge; planting flowers and seedlings; measuring soil and water– and caring for bird life.

Puppets are coming to life through the creativity and inspiration of Allentown’s youth, reports the Morning Call. Children in the Welcome to Our Family afterschool program at Fountain Hill Elementary are taking part in a puppeteer project designed to prevent child abuse by promoting strong families…

Grades: Prekindergarten–8
Type of Project: Poverty/Hunger, Community Building/Development

This project started as a simple assessment of interviewing skills. Kindergarten through 6th-grade students invited a representative from a local food pantry to speak to them. They prepared questions for the meeting and reviewed active listening. But as the speaker explained that many people in the community were hungry and described the pantry’s efforts to alleviate this problem, the students were moved to organize a food drive.

Youth prepared for their work by researching issues of hunger, homelessness, and poverty, learning the history of their community, and understanding citizenship as it relates to their role in helping the community. They learned about healthy foods and the affects of hunger on the body.

The students then translated their knowledge into colorful flyers and a letter explaining their food drive. Working in small groups, they studied a map of the neighborhood and plotted a course to distribute the information to households near their school. On collection day, they returned to these houses and picked up donated food. They used math skills to count, sort, weigh, compare, and chart the items. Adapted from “Route to Reform: K-8 service-learning Curriculum Ideas,” © 1994-95 National Youth Leadership Council.

One Idea from a Girl Scout Troop–that would work for a SAC Service Club!

One of my favorite ideas is to have a community service theme that you follow for a period of time; we tend to focus on a theme for a year. One year we ADOPTED AN AIR FORCE TEAM that was on active duty in Iraq. We showered Valentines, care packages, letters, and Girl Scout cookies on the men and women who were serving our country.

To make this project meaningful, we tried to personalize the team for the girls. We put together a small packet that “explained Iraq” at their level. In that packet was a letter from my former classmate explaining what they were doing in Iraq and describing their living conditions. We also included a map of the country showing where they were stationed and a summary of the conflict in “kid terms.” To create this, the Scholastic News site was extremely helpful. We also sent and received pictures back and forth, which put a face on the girls for the service men and women and vice versa.

Community Service Ideas Another year, our focus was helping families in a shelter trying to get back on their feet

We chose that particular shelter because it housed children, which we felt would have a greater impact on the girls. The girls kicked off their service to this shelter by serving Thanksgiving dinner. In two short hours the girls had “met” all the families and formulated a week’s worth of questions. We returned throughout the year to spend time in the shelter’s preschool playing with the kids, donating books to the school’s library, and to bring cases of our trademark cookies.
By Diana Laulainen-Schein 

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