Community service opportunities abound at BV

Danielle Williams, Entertainment Editor

Picking up trash along the highway.
Tutoring special needs students after school.
Helping out at a local Church.
These are all ways that Blue Valley students can log community service hours.  Most BV students know what community service is, but not enough know the importance of it.
BV librarian Ken Stewart said community service is important because it gives you a chance to give back to your community.
“We get so much living in the area we do,” he said. “But you’re more than just your own little unit. If you pay it forward and give back to people who really need something, it’s just a ripple effect.”
BV students are not required to complete any service in order to graduate; however, Stewart thinks every student should attain some hours because charity is becoming such an important part of our world.
“Look at the society was going into,” he said. “When something happened with hurricane Sandy, people jumped on board to help them. It’s just the kind of community people want to live in.”
Stewart said community service is a great thing to have on your resume.
“[Colleges] look at grades, but they also want to know how well rounded a person is,” he said. “They want to see what else you’ve done in high school and that’s an excellent way to show your giving back.”
To receive the President Service Award (PSA), you need 100 hours. To attain a bronze level you need 101-175 hours, for silver you need 175-248, and to receive the gold you must have donated 250 hours of your time and energy.
“We had 44% of our entire student body participating [in community service],” he said. “That’s pretty good, because to be a school of service you only have to have 10-20%, and we qualified the first semester.”
Stewart recommends completing your service hours by doing something out of your comfort zone.
“It is easy to do hours that are really convenient, like in neighborhoods and church,” he said. “Get out and try to find something where you’re working with different kinds of people,” he said.
Stewart said there are a lot of service opportunities available, such as donating time at homeless ministries, working at Wayside Waifs, or doing things with Salvation Army.
“I really think this type of service work makes you a more well rounded person,” he said.