The student news site of Brookline High School

The Cypress

The student news site of Brookline High School

The Cypress

The student news site of Brookline High School

The Cypress

Community Service Club makes service hours easy

Led by juniors Ella Tevald, Riley Ament and Tovah Falck, the Community Service Club fosters a democratic, cooperative approach to gaining community service hours.

Community service hours are a great way to gain real-world experience, develop leadership skills and give back to your community. If you don’t know where to start, a visit to the Community Service Club might be worthwhile.

Juniors Ella Tevald, Riley Ament and Tovah Falck are the leaders of the club, which meets every other X-block in room TAP 401. Their goal is not just to help their community, but also to provide accessibility to students who want to engage in community service.

The National Honors Society requires 15 community service hours during junior year and 20 during senior year. Tevald said such large numbers can evoke stress, and while many students who join the club aspire to give back to the community, reaching out can be daunting.

“[People who join the club] actually want to help the community, but it can be stressful,” Tevald said. “If you know you want hours, figuring out what to do and actually getting the hours can be tricky.”

During their meeting period, the club plans for future service opportunities and then reflects on their most recent “community adventure,” or volunteering group activity. Ament said the club strives for a diverse range of community service opportunities, so they encourage members to share their ideas and then vote on which one to do next.

Of the options the club has voted on, they plan to volunteer for Birthday Wishes, an organization that sets up birthday parties for kids at homeless shelters; the Brookline Food Pantry; and local park clean-ups.

Before the club’s first volunteering activity—writing letters for Letters for Rose, an organization dedicated to lowering isolation among older people by sending student-written letters to them—the leaders felt concerned about their members being sidetracked and unproductive, but Ament said they found that wasn’t the case since as a whole, the club wrote 40 letters to the elderly in two and a half hours.

“[The club members] were working really diligently towards our goals,” Ament said. “I would say we have a pretty supportive and positive community.”

To assist the current members of the club, Ament said she focuses on the club’s goal to improve the ease at which students can sign up for “community adventures.”

“[The club provides] ways that teenagers and high school kids can actually do things, because sometimes [community service] is really hard for younger kids,” Ament said.

Being involved in the Community Service Club is a shortcut to success, not just for the community, but also for the members’ personal development. Falck said the club presents a space for students to learn about themselves and what they enjoy doing.

“[Joining the club] is a good way to learn how to get involved in your community. You can explore what you like or what you feel is helpful,” Falck said. “We are always looking for new members.”

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