From the Court to the Classroom
Prior to shutdowns due to COVID-19, a member of the Southfield Christian School NHS chapter in Southfield, MI, jumped at the chance to aid youth in his community by assisting his basketball coach. He spent every Saturday morning for a month helping kids develop skills in both basketball and character. The student gave advice on how to succeed on the court and in the classroom by instilling the belief that hard work can lead to greatness. This mentorship opportunity showed the younger kids they matter and made the NHS member realize the importance of leading by example.
Partnering with the Peace Corps
An Easton Valley High School NHS member in Preston, IA, partnered with a former student—who had entered the Peace Corps to teach English in a foreign country—to raise money and collect supplies to benefit the children. In addition to making a poster to display in school and on social media, the member repurposed Pringles cans into cash donation receptacles, which were displayed along with drop boxes for supply donations at different locations throughout the community. Surpassing the original goal of $75, the student raised $139.66. Books, pencils, dry-erase boards, markers, art supplies, and games were also collected.
School Spirit Goes Virtual
Recognizing the need to maintain unity and school spirit after Hononegah Community High School in Rockton, IL, closed due to COVID-19, NatStuCo members created a virtual spirit week. Using Zoom technology, members met as an e-board to brainstorm ideas, and they presented options to the entire student body via a vote on 5-Star Students. Student feedback determined spirit themes, and the entire school participated by sharing images on social media. Content from the virtual spirit week aided the yearbook staff, who lost traditional content from spring sports, prom, and graduation. In the midst of social distancing, NatStuCo members brought the student community together.
Talking Trash and Going Green
To encourage sustainability through proper food waste disposal, the Ka’ōhao School student council in Kailua, HI, created a Zero Hero project. They set up sort-it-out stations around campus and in classrooms to recover food waste, cans, bottles, used paper, and mylar packaging for recycling. Students collected washable items and data pertaining to how much energy is used and how much waste is produced on campus, and composting methods were implemented to process 100 percent of campus food waste. Ka’ōhao School NatStuCo members presented their project to more than 2,000 educators at the annual Schools of the Future Conference.
Setting a Snowball Effect in Motion
While it doesn’t snow much near campus, Brock Junior High School NatStuCo members in Brock, TX, organized a snowball fight to raise money to buy art supplies, toys, games, movies, pajamas, and more for patients at the Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, TX. Members made fake snowballs by wrapping flour in tissue paper and tying off at the top, and students participated by purchasing snowballs and T-shirts that supported the event. Then, they took to the football field to have some fun. Fifty-three students participated, approximately $1,000 was raised, and members learned they could make a difference in the community by raising awareness and money to support local organizations.
Making Friends Makes a Difference
Randall K. Cooper High School NatStuCo members in Union, KY, created a “friendship finder” service to give students a new, creative outlet for charitable donations. A five-minute online survey was used to assess compatibility, and students paid $1 for results. Originally, all money raised was going to aid a local homeless shelter, but after a Randall High student’s house burned down, the profits were donated to support the fellow student. Participation vastly increased as the high school community drew together to help one of their own, all while discovering new friendships.
Offering Relief is Rewarding
An Edwin O. Smith High School NHS member in Storrs, CT, provided respite care for a family with an autistic child. The student tackled household chores, engaged the child in activities he enjoys, helped the child with his math homework, and ensured the child enjoyed physical activity outdoors. The primary caregivers were afforded a much-deserved break, and the student gained a valuable perspective on taking care of someone else.
Goats for Uganda
Trinity Christian Academy NHS members in Hollister, MO, organized a compassionate ministry caregiver project to purchase goats for four to six families in a village in Uganda. To promote the project, members made posters and visited classrooms where they presented information and played games focused on the East African country. They also enlisted a visit from a local goat farm owner who taught students about raising goats and brought a kid goat for students to pet and hold. The student body raised $735, which was matched by a community donor. Altogether, the money funded the purchase of 20–25 goats for four to six Ugandan families!
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