When children learn the importance of giving back early on, it can have a profound effect on their self-esteem and their outlook on the world. So as part of May’s focus on fitness, I want to showcase three ways high school athletes can improve their communities through volunteering.
A current-day high school experience is no longer based solely on academics and athletics. Most high schools also have students complete a set number of service hours as part of their graduation requirements.
So not only does volunteering benefit a young athletes personal development, but it will also help meet their yearly requirements.
And while volunteering means supporting an organization in the ways they need it most, the best experiences your high school student will have involve doing something they love to do.
Summer may have just begun, but service hour requirements start the minute the first bell rings therefore why not have your high school athlete check out these organizations and plan ahead?
Big Brother, Big Sister
My recommendation of the Big Brother, Big Sister program stems from the experiences a close friend of mine had as a Big Brother for a young man in New York City. He felt it was such a worthwhile program that he often set aside a day on the weekend in order to take his Little to the latest exhibits at local museums and the new, big blockbuster movies – all in the same day. He was a very busy businessman therefore he would only dedicate time to programs that were efficient and effective in their volunteer management.
So when I was researching options for high school students, I was happy to see they offered opportunities for young adults.
Become One Of The “High School Bigs”
The Big Brother, Big Sister website provides this explanation about their “High School Bigs” program:
High school students, ages 15 and up, provide elementary or middle school Littles with one-on-one time and attention, and/or homework help once a week . These matches meet during school or after school,
depending on their school’s program.
High School Bigs experience the joy and life changing power of community service while building college resumes, and possibly earning school credits.
Littles have the opportunity to connect with a role model close to their own age
and whom they can identify with strongly.
Big Brother, Big Sister has chapters nationwide therefore it should be fairly easy to find opportunities in your area.
Empower 2 Play
Here at Goods Giving Back we are such big fans of Empower 2 Play, they are one of the four nonprofits that currently benefit from the handmade goods sold on the site.
Become An Empower 2 Play Ambassador
Empower 2 Play is looking for high school athletes who are passionate about sports and who embody leadership and who will promote the Empower 2 Play mission of giving back through sports in their local and international community.
Click here for more information on how your high school athlete can get involved in Empower 2 Play.
“Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.“
Special Olympics is a worldwide organization that provides training and competitions for approximately 4.5 million athletes in 170 countries and it holds a very special place in my heart.
As a high school volunteer, I got to see firsthand how the athleticism and camaraderie were on par with any other mainstream high school athletics event. The only difference I experienced was that no matter the prize I awarded someone, I always got a big hug and a smile.
Since the events Special Olympics offer run the gamut from figure skating to softball to kayaking any high school athlete looking to volunteer should be able to find their own sport or something similar to it. Or, your high school athlete can venture out and try something new.
Become A Special Olympics Volunteer
Learn more about becoming a Special Olympics volunteer by clicking here.
Volunteer Early And Often
Just as high school athletes gain critical life experiences from the sports they play, volunteering for any one of the above organizations will not only contribute to their own physical and emotional development but also improve their communities.
It’s the best possible win-win situation.