Although early February is not the typical time of year people choose to start focusing on serving others, why not start now? Whether you want to volunteer to connect with your community, show appreciation to others, or (let’s be honest), acquire some service hours under your belt, I compiled a list of organizations that I would recommend to other high school students to try out.
All Community Outreach
The All Community Outreach (ACO) is located in Allen and allows children 12 and older to volunteer, and those 15 and older are allowed to volunteer without a parent. The ACO offers a variety of means to service within their program. Most popularly, volunteers can work in the food pantry, accepting, sorting and stocking donations. Additionally, the ACO encourages volunteers to help out during seasonal events, such as Thanksgiving and back to school events. The ACO also allows individuals or groups to hold “third-party” donation drives to allow community members to aid their donation process.
Feed My Starving Children
Feed My Starving Children (FMSC), located in Richardson, allows volunteers to pack meals for children around the world. The organization asks volunteers to fill out a reservation to pack, but they are always looking to bring in friends, families, churches, and clubs that want to serve. Plan to schedule a volunteer time about one month in advance. The only downside to this organization is the location, as Richardson may be too far of a drive for some; however, FMSC is well organized and is an uplifting service opportunity for all.
Meals on Wheels
Meals on Wheels is popular for delivering meals to senior citizens, and this organization is always looking for volunteers to help their mission. They allow community members to donate their services in a variety of ways such as decorating oven mitts, cards and lunch sacks. They also ask volunteers to make care packages or blankets. If money or transportation is an issue for volunteers, you are welcome to participate in the remote means of service such as the card and bag decorating. This surely puts a smile on the recipients’ faces and helps Meals on Wheels greatly.
City Church McKinney
City Church McKinney offers an array of volunteer opportunities, especially for youth willing to work with children. Like the ACO, they always ask for volunteers, especially during seasonal events, Popsicles in the Park(summer), Thanksgiving blessing boxes, and Christmas. City Church also asks for volunteers on weekends for Sunday services, engaging and feeding children. This location is relatively close to the community, but if transportation is an affecting variable, City Church accepts donations.
The last organization I wanted to share is Children’s Health. Not only is Children’s Health a great opportunity for NHS members creating blankets, children’s cards and busy books, they also allow volunteers to donate other items that some members might not be aware of. This includes Beads of Courage bags and Infant Lovies. This is a perfect fit for those not able or willing to drive and actively volunteer, but still want to give back and donate.
While in-person service organizations continue to open back up, I encourage you to find places in the community that need your assistance. If you are interested in serving and want to try different organizations or you are not sure where to start, visit justserve.org to find the perfect fit for you.