As fun as Habitat for Humanity is (seriously, it's awesome), some of us aren't the best with hand-eye coordination and struggle with putting together an IKEA bookshelf. Thus, putting together a house might not suit your fancy. However, there are some great community service opportunities that will look awesome on your college apps and don't involve putting hammer to nail at all!
#HashtagLunchbag is a movement dedicated to utilizing social media to bring awareness to and eliminate hunger in local communities. On Christmas Day in 2012, the founders all chipped in some money to buy food, assemble lunch bags and give them to the local homeless community. It started with a small group of friends in an apartment and has since grown into a global effort.
If you have a passion for stopping hunger, this organization is for you. To get involved, there are a few simple steps. First, find a group of friends who are interested in helping out as well. Next, go grocery shopping (a shopping list can be downloaded here. Then, put your lunch bags together and find somewhere to distribute them to people in need. Last, share what you’re doing on social media with #HashtagLunchbag to get the buzz going!
2. Girls on the Run
Love working with kids, running or both? Then Girls on the Run may be for you! Girls on the Run aims “to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum that creatively integrates running”. The organization teaches life skills in small teams that meet twice a week for 10 to 12 weeks. The 24-lesson program is taught by certified Girls on the Run coaches. Each team organizes a community service event and participates in a 5k at the end of the training.
Haley Cahill, a senior at Appalachian State University, did something unique for Girls on the Run with her school’s Her Campus chapter. “We contacted a local [GOTR] chapter and asked if we could come to one of their practices and bring them healthy snacks to eat before they practiced while we told them about what Her Campus is and how it empowers women,” she says. “We hung out with them a few minutes after, and it was a fun experience to get to spend time with these younger girls and tell them about something they weren't familiar with.”
This is a great option for you if you enjoy working with kids because you’ll serve as these young girls’ inspiration. Also, if you’re a health fiend, the 5k may spark your interest. To get involved, you can apply to become a coach or volunteer at your local Girls on the Run event.
3. Project Linus
Feeling crafty? If so, Project Linus may be for you! This organization provides homemade blankets to children in need. If you sew, knit or crotchet, you can make a blanket to donate to an ill or traumatized child. If you aren’t the crafty type, don’t worry! Donate a simple no-sew fleece blanket instead.
Project Linus is a rewarding and fun service opportunity perfect for creative pre-collegiettes who want to help a child in need. Find the chapter that’s closest to you and drop off your donation. If there’s no chapter in your area, ship your donation to the closest one.