“Teen community service projects instill a sense of accomplishment in the kids involved.  They see the impact of their efforts on a local level, which often inspires them to continue assisting in local areas of need.”

                –Shelley Frost*

Why is volunteering so important? When should we introduce the concept of community service to students? How can we instill in the youth of today the value of giving back and positively contributing to our world?  

What is volunteerism?

This is the giving of your time, energy, expertise, and companionship to those who are in need of it. It is a service provided without pay, and is completed out of pure compassion for others.

What can schools do to promote volunteerism?

  • Organize a clothing drive*
  • Organize a toy drive*
  • Arrange to read stories to children at the local children’s hospital*
  • Package items for deployed soldiers*
  • Help out at a local food pantry *
  • Serve a meal at a homeless shelter*
  • Provide babysitting services for single moms who need a break*
  • Participate in a community clean-up*
  • Help to deliver Meals-on-Wheels
  • Finish yard work for a senior citizen.

How do students benefit from volunteerism?

  • Increased self-esteem of those who participated**
  • Acquisition of new skills**
  • Strong feelings of being valued and needed**
  • Opportunity to meet new people**
  • Higher grades than students who don’t volunteer**
  • Feelings of empowerment, that they CAN make a difference in the world**
  • More positive attitude toward our world and life in general**.

Follow this link for more information about matching a service to a student:


*Frost, S. (n.d.). Retrieved 5 13, 2012, from eHow: http://www.ehow.com/list_6328132_teen-community-service-projects.html

**Heim, S. (2010, 1 20). Retrieved 5 13, 2012, from www.TeenLife.com: http://www.teenlife.com/news/35374/ARTICLESTeensandVolunteerismTheBenefitsofCommunityServicefor-.htm



.On the lifelong lessons and habits of giving back and volunteerism
see RaceBridges Studios resource
Giving It Back..Passing It On..Service Learning
in your Classroom