2016 Global Youth Service Day - April 15-17
ServeNebraska is proud to be a Global Youth Service Day Lead Agency and excited to support Nebraska organizations, schools, and other not-for-profit community groups in developing and implementing service learning projects engaging Nebraska youth in service to their communities.
ServeNebraska, in partnership with State Farm and Youth Service America, invited schools and other community based non-profit and governmental organizations to develop, coordinate and implement service-learning projects that engaged Nebraska youth in service from the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service Global Youth Service Day April 15-17, 2016.
Youth Service America, alongside State Farm Insurance and ServeNebraska, have partnered to hand out $250 grants for youth-led service learning projects that tackle an identified community need.
2015 Youth Service America/State Farm Funded Projects
Dodge County 4-H, Omaha
As part of their Annual Lend a Hand Day, current and potential 4-H members got together on April 11th for volunteer activities at nine different non-profit organizations. Approximately 50 youth were on hand to play games at Care Corps Housing Services, create animal toys at the Dodge County Humane Society, read books at Keene Memorial Library, and much more. This project allowed youth to see why community service is important and how they can personally make a difference in someone’s life. It also got them thinking about future plans for community service.
Completely KIDS, Omaha
Through a partnership with Omaha’s Park East Neighborhood Association, 70 Completely KIDS youth made their community better and took a stand against violence with two acts of direct service. On April 13th, students beautified and cleaned the East Park and promoted peace through the creation of a “peace path” dedicated to everyone in Omaha affected by violence. The beautification efforts consisted of picking up trash, cleaning and re-painting a sidewalk mural. Next, students hosted a community event in the East Park on April 17th, where they voiced their stand against violence, educated community partners and members on violence prevention, and held a dedication of the peace path.
Lancaster County Teen Council, Lincoln
Over 20 youth from the Lancaster County Teen Council made tied fleece blankets for the Friendship Home. The blankets will provide warmth, security, and a sense that others care to victims of domestic violence and their families. In addition to selecting the fabric and tying the blankets, the children learned about domestic violence, the Friendship home, and why it is important.
St. Mary’s Elementary School, Ord
Over 60 of St. Mary’s elementary school children cleaned and added landscaping outside Gorak Hall – a multipurpose building in the community. The youth also helped by cleaning the walking trail at Auble’s Pond. Not only did this project beautify a heavily-used part of town, it hopes to spur the youth to take pride in their community, continue to volunteer throughout their lives, and develop long-lasting relationships with older community members who they can collaborate and work alongside with towards making a better world.
Omaha School Foundation
As part of Growing Flora for Nebraska Pollinators, students planted native plants at elementary schools that will help pollinators. The 140 youth participants mentored the elementary students about the plants and the pollinators. Next year, the students will be back to monitor and evaluate the results of their efforts.
Joe’s Clover Knights, Walton
At least 82 students and their families worked together to create care packages and emotionally exciting gifts for refugee families in Lincoln. The packages included a variety of items – ranging from clothes to books to sports balls. In addition to providing families in need with emotionally satisfying items, students learned what a refugee is and fostered a sense of continuing volunteerism that they will use for the rest of their lives.
Habitat for Humanity, Omaha
Youth, alongside adult volunteers, primed and painted several murals to be used for boarding up doors and windows in vacant and condemned houses in the Kountze Park neighborhood. Besides providing a different, more pleasant look to a boarded up home, the project provides safety and repels criminal activity in unsecure houses. Under supervision, the youth were able to interact with the homeowners and renters. Thus, providing them with the opportunity to understand that even the most imposing neighborhoods contain good people just needing a helping hand to better their situations.
Fantastic 4 4-H, Lincoln
Fantastic 4 is hosted a May Day Celebration on April 19 for the elementary school-aged girls living at the People’s City Mission, as well as girls from the nearby Lakeview Elementary. They taught the girls traditional dances, led group activities, and had several crafts available. The girls were also provided with a healthy snack, a May Day basket, and a gift bag of essential items to take with them. The celebration promoted fitness, creativity, and inclusion by providing a fun multicultural experience that recognizes and respects others’ uniqueness.
FYI Center, Fairbury
Upwards of 50 youth in cooperation with adults from the FYI Center built garden boxes and painted window coverings close to the garden. Fairbury has a large percentage of youth using the free or reduced lunch program; the plan is to have the garden contribute to monthly dinners for members of the community. By partaking in this project, students gained hands-on educational experience that taught healthy life choices. The youth should have a great sense of accomplishment after the garden begins to yield vegetables for use in the community.
Previously, ServeNebraska hosted the Service Learning: Nuts & Bolts workshop in partnership with the University of Nebraska Omaha Service Learning Academy. The resources below were shared at this workshop and may be of use in crafting your Global Youth Service Day proposal:
The Service Learning Cycle
K-12 Service-Learning Standards for Quality Practice
Integrating Service & Learning Worksheet
Meaningful Service: Identifying Genuine Needs
Introduction to Reflection
Duration & Intensity: Evidence from the Research
Duration & Intensity: Examples
Additional information on Global Youth Service Day, including project ideas and resources can be found at
Global Youth Service Day: http://gysd.org/
Youth Service America:www.ysa.org
National Youth Leadership Council: www.nylc.org
For More Information Contact:
This opportunity is coordinated by the ServeNebraska InterCorps Council and supported by State Farm and Youth Service America.