Volunteering Makes us Better People.

Volunteering teaches us that others have needs and that we actually have a lot to give. And maybe a lot to be grateful for. Volunteering also helps our communities do exceptional work for those who may need it. Whether at the animal shelter or at the public library, our strengths can grow our community’s strengths.

In volunteering their time, our students not only give to our community, they can earn elective credit for volunteering too. In addition, students should keep track of their volunteer hours for college and scholarship reporting purposes (there’s a great form for that here).

Here’s how to engage in the process:

Decide on a place you’d be interested in giving your time to. Maybe you want to help with something you’re good at (working with young children, cleaning, answering telephones) or maybe you aren’t experienced yet but want to learn more. Approach the business or nonprofit with a plan on what you could help them with, and what days and times you are available to do so*.

*(Please note that some organizations have regulations in regard to age. For example, Brightside Animal Shelter has many opportunities for students to volunteer, but will not allow students under 18 to work with dogs. In addition, please check with the organization for any paperwork needed.)

Once you’ve gotten their approval to go forward, schedule a meeting with your high school advisor to fill out the Self-Created Course Form (please fill out as much as you can before the meeting). Using this form, you will come to an agreement about how you will display proficiency in this elective class. For example, you could write papers, design a Powerpoint presentation, take a test, or build a portfolio of work. You will also develop a timeline determining when the course will be completed. This form must be signed by the student, parent, instructor, and counselor.
Once you have completed the form please turn it into your high school counselor and the course will be added to your schedule.