The Cityof Orlando’s After-School All-Stars program has long been devoted to providing middle school students with safe and free out-of-school and summer activities. The organization is dedicated to developing life skills which help youth become responsible and confident citizens in the community.
With over 30,000 hours and 100 projects, it’s easy to see how community service and service learning is one of the core principles that the program instills in the children.
Each student is required to do a minimum of 4-5 hours of community service per semester. Some even go as far as volunteering 100 hours in one semester.
A large amount of hours come from working at the school sites. Students clean, fix gardens and help teachers. Their bigger projects involve school beautification where they dig and paint anything that needs to be redone.
In addition to the school projects, students also volunteer at lake cleanups, food harvest festivals, toy drives, road cleaning events, homeless shelters, senior centers and more.
After-School All-Stars Executive Director Tyler Chandler says the kids will best describe the service philosophy as “the city is doing so much for me, that I in turn need to do something for the city.” Chandler also says that community awareness is helping these kids to grow up as responsible citizens who understand their neighborhoods.
Students in the program are always engaged in service learning which helps them find a problem and think about a solution. They have a huge role in picking project ideas that they think need some attention in their community.
Through their community involvement and project ideas, the After-School All-Stars prove that getting involved and giving back is possible no matter your age.
For more information please visit orlandoasas.org (*)
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