Service Stories

Get inspired by Service Stories submitted by members of the generationOn network! You can filter by issue area, city or state, or browse them all.

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CT Humane Society Drive

Roxy Ann - Canton, Connecticut - May 23, 2017
Total Volunteers:
61
Total Hours Served
495
School wide drive for dogs, cats, birds in the CT Humane Society. Kids Care Club initiated a school wide drive for animal food, toys, bedding and more. We filled 25 boxes in April 2017.

Gardening project

Heather - New York, New York - May 23, 2017
Total Volunteers:
31
Total Hours Served
603
Regular gardening projects

Weekly reading program

Heather - New York, New York - May 23, 2017
Total Volunteers:
23
Total Hours Served
2282
We do a weekl reading program in Staten Island with club members and youth ages 5-10.

HEALTH for Youths Cleanup Project

Heather - New York, New York - May 23, 2017
Total Volunteers:
41
Total Hours Served
122
This is a monthly project that we do. We cleanup areas of State. Island, and also do beautification.

Casseroles for those in Need

Lesley - Indianapolis, Indiana - May 22, 2017
Total Volunteers:
20
Total Hours Served
225
Students measured ingredients and assembled casseroles for those in need and distributed to Ronald McDonald House and Out Reach, Inc.

Blankets for OutReach, Inc.

Lesley - Indianapolis, Indiana - May 22, 2017
Total Volunteers:
20
Total Hours Served
200
Students assembled no-sew blankets for OutReach Inc. to distribute to homeless teens who they service.

Prek Read Aloud

Sarah - Brooklyn, New York - May 22, 2017
Total Volunteers:
6
Total Hours Served
23
Our Kids Care Club ran story time in a PreK classroom. We chose the book (we chose it because it spoke about a community), practiced reading aloud to eachother, planned questions, chose roles (some of us read while others sat in the audience and helped with questions), and worked together to create a great experience for our littlest classmates!

Community Garden Plant Distribution

Kimberly - Chicago, Illinois - May 21, 2017
Total Volunteers:
6
Total Hours Served
108
Members of the CYC "Nature Team" aka Connectors Service Club assisted Chicago Community Garden Association (CCGA) to distribute more than 1,000 seeds, seedlings, and plants at three different distributions in the Spring

Make Your Mark on Hunger

Kimberly - Chicago, Illinois - May 21, 2017
Total Volunteers:
22
Total Hours Served
36
Creation of our community youth garden. Kids prep, plan, and plant vegetables to nourish community residents. They also work with more community gardens to promote urban agriculture and youth gardening

Joy Makers Club Christmas Cards

Kimberly - Chicago, Illinois - May 21, 2017
Total Volunteers:
21
Total Hours Served
115
Youth in our "Connectors" Service Club delivered more than 200 Christmas cards to Senior Citizens.

Riley Kindness Campaign

Robyn - LaPorte, Indiana - May 19, 2017
Total Volunteers:
475
Total Hours Served
684
All K-5th grade students learned first-hand what kindness is, what it looks like and how to show kindness toward others. The month of February was dedicated to Kindness at Riley School. Students learned that their words and actions can hurt others and how acts of kindness can help others. Students learned in classroom guidance lessons about kindness. We held a Kindness Week for all students and staff. Students created kindness posters and hung them all over the school. Older students also placed kind post it notes on each student and teacher's desk. We had a Random Acts of Kindness Wall and students performed this random kind act for someone else and then told everyone about it on the wall. Each student decorated a 3 x 3 card and together all of the cards created a Be Kind Mural in the main hallway. Each student received a #KINDNESS bracelet to promote kindness.

Knitting Warmth and Kindness

Kristin - Elwood, Indiana - May 19, 2017
Total Volunteers:
11
Total Hours Served
155
This project was created to teach the students about philanthropy and understand what it means to give of their time and efforts for the sake of others. I will teach the students how to knit hats and scarves on looms and then we will donate those items to the homeless shelters and pantries in town.

Feed our children

Jody - moundsville, West Virginia - May 17, 2017
Total Volunteers:
46
Total Hours Served
172.5
We collected several pounds of food to. Elbe sent home with students

Global Responsibility & Social Justice

Cimberly - Indianapolis, Indiana - May 17, 2017
Total Volunteers:
127
Total Hours Served
1327
Our 12th grade students created mini lessons on human rights violations to inform 6th graders at one of our local elementary. There 8 different groups teaching different human rights violations. They created a service learning project to link to the human rights violation, some local and others global project. The topics and projects included: 1. Refugees; Collected socks for "Exodus Refugee" in Indianapolis 2. Child Labor; Collected small toys to send to orphanages in Vietnam 3. Child Soldiers; Red Hand Campaign 4. Human Mistreatment of Animals; Collected supplies for the "Humane Society" 5. Children not allowed to attend school; Collected school supplies for those in need 6. World Hunger; Purchased a Goat and Flock of Hope for third world communities from "Heifer International" 7 and 8. Social Injustice; Held a Charity basketball game to help the Police and Fire Departments build communities relationships; As a culminating service project to end the unit, we host a police versus fire department basketball game and all of the admissions are divided between the police and fire departments to purchase basketballs, soccer balls and footballs for the police department to hand out to children in the community and stuffed animals for the fire department all to build community relations between the authorities and the people.

Civil Rights

Dondra - Kokomo, Indiana - May 17, 2017
Total Volunteers:
81
Total Hours Served
806
Both the service learning project was done in the classroom for an hour a day. Reading and discussion took place as well as answering questions about different time periods and how life is different today in some instances. Students made posters and illustrated timeline on a bulletin board for elementary and middle school kids to see. In addition next year students will work on participating in MLK day with the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority to discuss the book through a mini museum of some sort of activity.

IN59-25 Helping Hearts Snack Healthier

Alicia - Mooresville, Indiana - May 17, 2017
Total Volunteers:
11
Total Hours Served
52.5
With this project, there were 10 students from my biomedical sciences classes that volunteered their time outside of class to perform a service learning project for a group of about 60 elementary school students after school one day. Initially, I conducted an information gatherign survey to all of my students to find out who would be interested, when they were available to plan and carry out the project, and what group of people they most wanted to work with. The idea was to take some of the information they had learned throughout the school year about heart and overall health and put on some sort of program or service for an identified group in need. Overwhelmingly, my students wanted to work with children. So, I reached out to our local parks department which is in charge of the after school care program for K-6 students at Northwood Elementary, which is right next to Mooresville High School. We scheduled a day (Thursday, May 11th) for the after school activities to take place, and then the real planning began. I oversaw two days after school in the weeks leading up to May 11th where the 10 students worked for a couple of hours each day to plan their activities. In the end, they decided on healthy snacks of a fruit (Cutie oranges or apple slices), a low fat string cheese, a single serving pack of cookies (2 oreos or 2 chips ahoy), and a low sugar juice box for each child. During snack time, they would have discussions about choosing healthy snacks in both nutrition and portion. Then, there would be 3 stations at which the students would rotate in groups based on their ages. They would spend about 15 minutes at each station, which include the following: (1) Group Games: Emphasizing Group Play and Staying Active -“Fruit Salad” Tag -Hula-Hoop Team Challenge (2) Biomedical Science Brain Teasers -Heart Puzzle Relay -Chalk Outlines: Where does blood flow? (3) “Blood” Splatter Experiment -Simulation of a blood drop experiment -Measure and investigate like a Crime Scene Investigator Students then split up into teams for each station to become experts in their area. They gave me (the teacher) a shopping list of what they needed for each station, and then I went shopping a couple of days before the event to purchase the necessary supplies and snacks for the 60 K-6 kids. The actually day of the project went great, except that it was raining and we had planned to do the activities outside. Luckily, the students had alternative plans in case this happened, and they were able to still complete each station with the kids. At the end of the program, each kid at the after school program went home with a short page explaining their activities for the day and who hosted the event, along with a page of 5 healthy habits to discuss as a family and a small page of fruit shaped smelly stickers.

Garden

landy - key biscayne, Florida - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
39
Total Hours Served
420
Students researched plants and butterflies found in our local park's butterfly garden. They created summaries for the plant that they researched and recorded the summaries onto a QR code. We printed signs with QR codes for each plant of the butterfly garden for the park naturalists to display. We also decorated river rocks by painting the butterflies that we researched on them and spreading them along the park's butterfly garden. We also helped the park naturalists plant new bushes and to transfer plants in their nursery.

Tigers Tackle Cancer

Melanie - Fort Wayne, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
91
Total Hours Served
2071
This project involves 7th grade math and science students giving back to our local school community by connecting teens with local residents fighting cancer. The funds will be used in two-fold: for supplies to create chemotherapy comfort kits; containing water bottles, unscented chapstick, hand-sanitizer, crossword puzzle and pen or adult coloring book and colored pencils, tissues, oral digital thermometers, and inspirational quotes and messages on decorated bags; as well as for supplies to support the cancer walk/run event authentically created and ran by our students.

CNMS Clothes Closet

Darlene - Newburgh, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
22
Total Hours Served
184
The CNMS generationOn Club members were asked to organize a room of donated clothes in order to make them more accessible and presentable for students in need of clothing. The students spent a few months accessing the situation. The clothes had been in storage for a while and needed to be laundered. The first task was to donate any clothes that did not meet dress code or were not desirable. In the end, there were 30+ loads of laundry that were washed and dried in one evening at a local laundromat. Soap and anti-static sheets were donated. The students spent additional time separating the girls' and boys' clothes. Storage bins were purchased with a gift card awarded through the generationOn survey contest. The project is ongoing as clothes are donated and need to be prepared for use.

Wreaths Across America

Darlene - Newburgh, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
82
Total Hours Served
182
National Wreaths Across America Day honored fallen heroes in our community on Saturday, December 17, 2016. Rose Hill Cemetery is the resting place for 530 veterans. These veterans represent all wars with American involvement since the War of 1812. generationON joined Rose Hill Cemetery in partnering with Wreaths Across America and decorated each of our veterans’ graves with a beautiful, live balsam Christmas wreath during the remembrance ceremony which is scheduled for 11am on Saturday, December 17, to coincide with the national ceremony at Arlington.

Let the Reading Begin

Darlene - Newburgh, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
31
Total Hours Served
470
The Castle North Middle School generationOn Club is promoting literacy for preschoolers and elementary students through a project designed to share and enjoy reading experiences. The ultimate goal of this multi-faceted project is to sponsor the Dolly Parton Imagination Library in Warrick County. All activities will include information about the importance of reading from an early age and how to register for the gift of reading provided through the Dolly Parton Foundation. • Step 1: The CNMS generationOn Club members wrote and illustrated a book, “Not Just a Story”, which communicates the message “Reading will take you on adventures”. The book was inspired by “Only One You” by Linda Kranz. Each page shares a lesson in life in a different setting.The challenge of completing a collaborative project with students who see each other a few times each month was met by meeting daily for a few weeks. The Learning to Give lessons and collaboration skills developed through out the process of deciding a theme, format, and individual responsibilities that led to the publishing of 250 copies to be distributed as thank you gifts for anyone donating $25 or more. • Step 2: The CNMS generationOn Club members and sponsors contacted the local elementary schools to request attending family functions in the month of April. Five of the nine elementary schools offered to let the students promote and raise funds for the Imagination Library in Warrick County. The students designed display boards, poster boards, and an informational flyer to be distributed at presentations. Students sold “Cards for a Cause” until the end of April to begin building the funds for the first two years of Imagination Library. They also collected donations and continue to work to build partnerships with local businesses. Grant writing begins now and will continue through the fall 2016. The informational flyer was revised three times based on questions posed by visitors to the table. The students also learned how to approach anyone who approached the table. • Step 3: Students are prepared to present to organizations and businesses. A power point presentation is in place. A promotional video is available for viewing. • The plan is to take registrations for children born in 2017 when we have raised funding to support the program for two years ($20,000). Our goal is to collect the needed funds by June, 2017 and start registering children born in 2017 by August, 2017. Registration for children born in 2018 will be in January, 2018. As funds continue, children born in 2019, 2020, 2021…will be eligible for registration. • Children under the age of 5 can register to receive a book each month from the Dolly Parton Foundation. The cost of the books is estimated at $25 per child per year. Registration fees will be accepted in the form of donations since families are not to be turned away due to the inability to pay. This project is ongoing and ever-changing. The goal of starting the Imaginary Library is dependent on corporate sponsorships. Students are learning how to inform and communicate with potential sponsors.

ABC Promise Project

April - New Castle, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
326
Total Hours Served
443.125
Each year at NCMS our students are required to get 2 hours community service. WE offer several opportunities for our students to gain their service ours. One such opportunity comes through a large service learning project. This year's project is the ABC Promise project. The project stands for A Bench for Caps and is a teaching tool for lifetime habits of green living (per greentree plastics recycling). The program reeinforces the need to recycle trash (such as plastic lids) and then once collected, kwe can turn the discarded plastic into a useable bench for our school, plus one for a non-for profit. Our goal was to purchase 3 benches; 2 for our school and 1 for another organization. We would need to donate 400lbs of plastic to get one bench, plus $250 per bench. After just one semester (Aug to Dec) we were able to collect of 2000 lbs of lids and with extra grant money, we were able to purchase an additional bench for our community. One bench was donated to our community Art's park and the other to a softball diamond. Next Tuesday, our major of New Castle, Mr. Greg York has offered to do a dedication ceremony for the benches and acknowledge our efforts. Our students and staff did a wonderful job of collecting, sorting, and weighing the lids and they helped make this project a success. This was truly a student led program! Furthermore, we also paired with Earthday.org and led an Earth Day park clean up after school to continue to teach service learning and environmental concerns in to the 2nd semester. We discussed the importance and safety of park cleanups. The students also took a post survey where they reflected on their findings, the organization of the program and their general thoughts about the project. Students responded that they signed up to help this event because they "needed community service hour" or "wanted to make the world a better place." They reported that they mostly found cigarette butts, paper, cups from restaurants, etc. Students also reported that it was a very rewarding experience and that it taught them to respect their environment more.

"Dream Day" Project

Jeremy - New Palestine, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
10
Total Hours Served
102
We have created a program to grant the "wishes" of students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) at our school. We asked them to come up with "their dream day in Indiana" and we will work to plan and fund the day as close to what they asked for as possible.

Riley T-Shirt Fundraiser

Jeremy - New Palestine, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
8
Total Hours Served
112
We created a t-shirt for our school athletic events and sold them to students and parents and gave all of the proceeds to Riley Children's Hospital.

Everyone's Safety is Key

Savannah - Newburgh, Indiana - May 16, 2017
Total Volunteers:
3
Total Hours Served
31
It was only about 4:30 or so when I began walking at the Newburgh Riverwalk. I reached Edgewater Grill, a restaurant downtown in the city which I reside in, and decided it was time to turn back because I knew it would soon be getting dark. By the time I reached the wooded area where the bridge is it was pitch black. To my astonishment, there were no lights to guide me through this section of the Riverwalk. This filled me with emotions of fear but also worry. It was a good thing I had some battery left on my phone to use its flashlight. Since then, it has been on my mind that there really needs to be lights there to make sure everyone is safe at all times of the day. To illuminate this area I wanted to use solar lights because why would you use electricity that’s going to cost more in the long run when you could use solar energy, and the lights will basically pay themselves off. I researched the beneficial factors of these kinds of lights to gain knowledge that would help aid in my project. Some benefits of solar lights are that they are eco-friendly. Also their energy is renewable. I also decided after some more research that I definitely need to use LED bulbs rather than incandescent. The reason for this being LEDs are free of toxic chemicals, and incandescent lights can contain mercury which is very dangerous to the human body. Also LEDs do not have a filament so they do not burn out like your average kitchen light bulbs. LED bulbs have a light expectancy of up to 100,000 hrs which is approximately 11 years. For my project I wanted to reach out to the city to get approval regarding the lights I wanted to place in the area that is not lit. After getting approval, I would have then been able to write a grant application to generationOn. If my grant application was approved, I would have been given the money needed to pay for the lights that I chose. I would then install them to help ensure the community member’s safety. I then contacted the park director through email. I found the email on our cities website under the River trail area. This whole project has been a learning experience not only for me but members of my school and family. The things I have learned I have told them because they were so interesting. I really would have liked to help make a difference in my community, but I guess it just was not meant to be. I created a wonderful PowerPoint that I was prepared to present to the city council of Newburgh along with a budget for the lights I had chosen. I emailed the park director with an attachment of the PowerPoint and budget only to not get a responseuntil three days later. The email I received back told me that she would forward my proposal to the Trail Committee, and they would contact me. I waited almost two weeks with no reply. I again messaged the park director and made her aware I had not received anything back. I find it extremely irritating that my teacher had to message them in order to get information back about my project. They should have emailed me directly regarding their review of the proposal. When my teacher got an email back, they told her that it’s refreshing that I was concerned because not many citizens come forward with any concerns or solutions. The head of the Trail committee then proceeded to tell me that they cannot put lights there due to a light agreement because it would bother the adjacent houses along with the wildlife. Also the trail is apparently a dusk to dark trail only which most people do not know. They don’t know about this because it is posted very small on a sign most people do not even read. Basically their answer to me was no, I could not put up any lights. What I have to say regarding that is they aren’t very concerned about the people of their town. I don’t think I would have done anything different with my project. I’m sure there is something that could have been different, but I feel I did everything necessary that I was sure I would get approval. Everything was done and said how I wanted. I think all I can do now is not walk after dark. Also I let the city know that they need larger signs stating that the trail is from dusk to dark only so people are aware of this and won’t hold the city accountable if any injuries occur. I wish they would have let me put the lights up. It would have felt really good to have done something good for my community and help to ensure community member’s safety better.

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