Treat Yo Shelves
After learning a local homeless shelter was in desperate need of children’s books, NHS members at Riverbend Academy in Ormond Beach, FL, organized a charitable drive to help those in need. Members promoted the children’s book drive on Riverbend Academy’s social media platforms. They also created and distributed hard-copy flyers for younger kids and parents picking up children at dismissal to encourage donations from elementary, middle level, and high school students. Members were astounded by the community’s involvement and generosity, and were overjoyed to collect and contribute 492 books to the local homeless shelter within two weeks.
Please, Take a Seat
After realizing the need for additional outdoor seating so students and teachers could safely sit during lunch and recess amid a pandemic, an NHS member designed and built six outdoor benches for Post Oak School in Bellaire, TX. The student raised over $1,000 to purchase all the lumber and supplies needed for the project. Following four months of planning and prepping, NHS chapter members and members of the student’s Boy Scout troop helped assemble six benches that will provide outdoor seating opportunities for years to come.
Hoping to provide the people of the Androscoggin Hospice House in Auburn, ME, with a comfortable way to wear masks for long periods, two NHS members at Lewiston High School in Lewiston, ME, made 50 mask mates (or ear savers). They managed to make the community service a family affair—one of the member’s grandmothers donated yarn and her sewing skills, and another relative contributed buttons. The NHS members delivered the mask mates to a nurse outside of the Androscoggin Hospice House and were very happy they had an opportunity to help people smile and stay safe during difficult times. They also learned how to knit and sew—skills the members will value forever and hope to use to help other people in the future.
It’s All in the Bag
When the Boy Scouts of America’s Greater St. Louis Area Council had to cancel its Scouting for Food day of service due to COVID-19, two NHS members at Parkway North High School in St. Louis, MO, took it upon themselves to put food on the tables of those in need. They created a food drive and adopted the same approach as the Scouts, distributing bags—including details explaining what donations were needed in the community—and collecting them a week later from all who wished to donate. After all the bags were collected, volunteers sorted through and organized the nonperishable items, which were later distributed to a local food pantry. Members were astonished by the support they received from volunteers and elated to collect over 5,000 items.
Our Planet, Our Future
Wanting to spread awareness about the importance of caring for the Earth, members of the Fulton Science Academy NJHS chapter in Alpharetta, GA, created an event that encouraged students to complete environmentally beneficial acts. Members promoted the event through the school newsletter, emails, and flyers. Students digitally submitted a video or picture of themselves making a positive impact on the Earth via a Google form. Not only were participants happy to make a difference, they were also eligible to win a $15 gift card. While student involvement was less than members hoped for, they were proud to boost environmental consciousness and learned to implement more extensive advertising in future projects.
NatStuCo members at Bay View Middle School in Green Bay, WI, are constantly prioritizing student voice, and they are proud that their advisory representatives take the task so seriously. After being elected by their fellow students to represent Advisories (or homerooms), advisory representatives regularly conduct surveys to gather opinions on a variety of topics—including but not limited to maintenance issues and concerns, lunchroom and recess concerns, ideas for spirit days, and voting. Feedback from the surveys is discussed with school administrators monthly to facilitate improvements and ensure the student body is represented. The council has learned many valuable lessons throughout the advisory representative process, but the biggest one is that every voice and opinion matters and should be heard, because diversity is essential for a school to learn and grow.
I Know What You Meme
With so many students at Ensign Intermediate School in Newport Beach, CA, attending school remotely, NatStuCo members wanted to create a virtual competition to boost school spirit. Knowing how popular memes are, they selected these humorous images, videos, text, etc., for the competition theme. Members advertised the competition by creating their own memes, posting on the school website, creating a commercial for the school’s video announcements, designing posts for social media, and drafting an email that was distributed to all students. Participants submitted either self-made memes or favorite memes, and a winner was determined after the entire student body voted. The competition attracted ample engagement and created a sense of unity despite the distance. Submitters of the top three memes received spirit prizes.
Dedication Down to the Wire
Aware of the critical role face coverings play in everyday protection during the pandemic, a Madison Middle School NJHS member in Trumbull, CT, decided to learn how to make two different kinds of masks to donate to a local project supporting women and children who are currently going through chemotherapy. Some masks included an adjustable nose wire—these were more involved. All included fun, patterned fabric and adjustable ear elastics. The student created eight different designs and made 24 masks total. While the NJHS member had hoped to make more masks, the student derived great joy and fun from supporting the community and hopes to create and donate more in the future.