What better time to talk about serving your community than National Volunteer Week? Teens not only show compassion and empathy for their favorite causes, while they learn to lead and boost their college resumes in the process.
Research shows that teens who volunteer are happier and feel more connected to others in their community. We encourage you to get out there and volunteer!
Here are 7 easy ways you and your teen can volunteer this week:
- Animal Shelters
Local animal shelters almost always need volunteers. You can be a dog walker, do administrative work, or even be a pet soother. Fostering an animal is also a wonderful way to give back. Volunteer Match has a lot of animal based volunteer opportunities and you can also visit the Humane Society for a list of shelters near you.
- Food Banks or Soup Kitchens
Food pantries and soup kitchens can always use a hand organizing a local food drive or serving hot meals to those in need. FoodPantries.org and Feeding America is a great way to find a place that needs volunteers!
- Community or National Parks/Beaches
Go outdoors and enjoy the scenery while helping to clean up at the beach or local park. Try Volunteer Clean Up to find activities near you.
- Red Cross
You can give blood, or you can volunteer with the American Red Cross. They have a youth sign-up form on their website.
- Local Libraries
Libraries usually need help organizing the book shelves, helping kids with their homework, and special events like book signings and special programs. Libraries, also, typically have a summer reading program where teens can volunteer to read to the younger kids over their summer break. Check your local library!
- Retirement Homes/Senior Centers
- Champion Your Own Cause
Care about the drought? Children in war-torn areas? A specific disease that’s affected a friend or family member? The opportunity to make a difference stretches as far as your imagination. DoSomething.Org has some great examples of do-it-yourself service projects.
So, BE the change you want to see in the world!
To join Lion’s Heart and get handcrafted, local, teen-friendly volunteer opportunities sent right to your inbox, click here. We inspire teens to have a positive impact in their communities through leadership and participation in volunteering, providing needed resources for causes that ignite their passions. To learn more visit us here.
Written by Steph Hicks, Lion’s Heart Digital Marketing and Creative Director. Steph has two teenagers and two furry mutts and loves to read, paint, and volunteer in her spare time.
Announcing the Lion’s Heart spring photo contest winner for submitting this great photo of her Trabuco Canyon/Coto, CA 2022 girls group picking beans for the Second Harvest Food Bank. What a great photo of Lion’s Heart Members volunteering and making a difference in their community! Congratulations Mackenzie!
Here is the winning photo:
By winning the Lion’s Heart spring photo contest, Mackenzie won a pair of Beats Solo2 headphones that were delivered to her door yesterday. She was so surprised and thrilled she sent us a picture of her with them on!
Thank you so much, Mackenzie, for your fantastic entry and keep on giving back!
*Special thanks to all the Lion’s Heart Members who submitted photos to the contest, they were all wonderful. We are looking forward to sharing all your photos in the future on our social media channels with shout outs to the members/groups who took them.
Here are some ideas to spread the word about Lion’s Heart:
So you’re ready to change the world. Wouldn’t you love to have other great teens join you? You will need at least 2 more teens of your same gender and grad year to get your Lion’s Heart group started. Here are some great tools to help you get your friends to sign up.
1. Let your friends know about Lion’s Heart on social media. Use these posts to get you started, but feel free to use your own words too. We’ve even included some fun photos that you can use when you post.
- Facebook – Want to help me change the world? I just joined Lion’s Heart and I would love it if you would join too so we could volunteer together! A great thing about Lion’s Heart is that they help us find places to volunteer and we can choose our favorite causes. Visit Lion’s Heart to sign up. @lionsheartservice #givingback #teenvolunteering
- Instagram– Want to help me change the world? I am now a Member of Lion’s Heart and I would love it if you come join me when I volunteer in our community. Visit Lion’s Heart and sign up with me! #Teens #givingback #communityservice #teenvolunteers #highschool #teen #friends #giveback #lionsheartservice @lionsheartservice
- Twitter – Help me change the world. I just joined Lion’s Heart and will be volunteering with other teens. Sign up with me! @lionsheartorg #teenvolunteers #givingback
2. Share this YouTube video with other parents and teens. In less than 7 minutes they will learn all the important things they need to know about Lion’s Heart.
3. Visit our store and order free brochures that you can give to your high school counselors, parents and friends.
Any questions? You can visit our website and use the chat function or call us at 800.894.8877, ext.108.
Many assume that the college application process begins the fall of senior year. That’s when you should start writing your essays, prepare for any required standardized testing, and visit the universities you’re interested in. While that’s true, most of your college application has already been completed before senior year even begins.
Your college application is a summary of everything you’ve accomplished in high school academically and personally. The AP classes you’ve taken, or the IB courses you’ve selected, give an indication of the field of interests you may be attracted to. Your extracurriculars reflect what your personal interests are, and where your passion lies. In other words, when senior year rolls around, picking up additional extracurriculars or stacking up volunteering hours won’t add any substance to your applications. Just like you shouldn’t lie about who you are in your personal statement, don’t do anything just to impress the admissions officers.
For Lion’s Heart members, your dedication to volunteer work and the support you provide to your community will immediately be clear to the admissions team at any university. Demonstrate the impact it has had on your personal and professional development. What has it inspired you to do? What have you learned by volunteering at an animal’s shelter? Or at a hospital?
It’s easy to fall into the trap thinking that the “volunteer work” personal statement topic is overdone, but if that’s what best reflect who you are, you shouldn’t let that stop you. Take a look at how other’s have done it before you and be inspired to craft the best version of your application. We have curated 3 different packages of 5 successful application profiles that feature personal statements written on volunteer work.
Choosing which university to apply to is difficult. Make an informed decision by using AdmitSee’s searchable database of successful application materials, including essays, test scores and advice.