Volunteer work always leaves you feeling good about yourself and your community, but it is all the more sweet when that work is given statewide recognition and earns you a Gold Banner for achievement.
At the annual Students in Action Jefferson Awards for Indianapolis, Ind., and the surrounding region hosted on April 11, 2012, a team of students from the Simon Youth Clark Pleasant Academy placed second overall and earned a Gold Banner for the volunteer work they provided through the course of the academic year. Students in Action uses its Jefferson Awards to promote and celebrate high school students’ community volunteerism.
|The Academy team with its Gold Banner award.|
From left to right: Columbare, Gosnell, Burton,
McKinney, Jones, Fabian, Potter, and Lowe.
“This was the Academy’s first year competing,” says Kara Larkin, the lead teacher at the Academy. “We came up a single point short of winning the Indianapolis region, but we are so proud of our students for placing so highly in their first time entering.”
The Academy team’s volunteer projects centered on the theme of I Went Without, and at the competition, the students were judged on a presentation of the work they’d done as well as reports they submitted.
One of the projects talked about in their competition presentation, the Clark Pleasant team participated in A Day Without Shoes, going barefoot to raise awareness for homeless and other in-need community members who don’t have access to new or well-fitting shoes.
The students wrote and secured a grant for $300 and collected another $750 from community sponsors to print off t-shirts and wristbands for the day. The awareness items were sold to residents, raising another $500.
After expenses for printing the shirts and wristbands, the students were able to donate nearly $800 to the Kids In Crisis Intervention Team, a Johnson County charity that serves homeless youth, providing among other essentials shoes and clothing to its clients.
|The team at the|
The Students in Action Jefferson Awards team members from the Academy were Travis Burton, a student leader, Auston McKinney, a student leader, and Chris Columbare, Emily Gosnell, Alex Jones, Ruth Fabian, Christian Potter, and Kayla Lowe.
The school that won the competition to be named the Indianapolis Recipient For Outstanding Service By a High School was Shortridge Magnet High School for Law and Public Policy, which goes on to participate in the Jefferson Awards national competition later this year.
The Simon Youth Clark Pleasant Academy operates in partnership between Simon Youth Foundation and the Clark Pleasant Community School Corporation.