The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on January 20, 2020, marks the 25th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy. Observed each year on the third Monday in January as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities.
Community service is a big deal in the 4-H program and what a great way to help our younger members focus on giving back to others. Service is a life-long skill that is taught by experience. Much like everything we do in 4-H we like to tag it as experiential learning or learn by doing. So let’s start our 4-H Cloverbud members with a small community service project that will have big impact on their lives and the lives of others in our communities.
Here are links to help you with community service ideas:
Waiting Room Busy Bags is an idea where you can add some 4-H flavor to double as community service and 4-H promotion.
- Help a child waiting to visit the doctor or local clinic by making Waiting Room Busy Bags. This project was adapted from the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Just fill a zippered plastic bag with fun things a child would enjoy doing. The child is encouraged to keep the bag and take it with them.
- Ideas to include – crayons, markers, colored pencils, paper, coloring books, stickers, sticker books, resealable plastic bags.
- 4-H items – enrollment information, how to join 4-H, local volunteer opportunities for parents, how to start a 4-H SPIN (SPecial INterest) Club, 4-H stickers, 4-H pencils, make some 4-H coloring pages (4-H flag, 4-H Clover, etc.) Checkout https://shop4-h.org for other Clover branded items.
If you are looking for a children’s book to introduce community service, read on these:
- “Kiki’s Hats: Our Gifts of Love Live On and On” by Warren Hanson
- “The Lemonade Club” by Patricia Polacco