Hello! Welcome to the Project Stella Resources Blog.
This post comes from a webinar (watch here on YouTube) I did for community partners who want to get youth involved in their service projects for Make a Difference Day. But I found these tips are very useful for our Schools that Radiate Outrageous Compassion & Kindness (Schools that R.O.C.K.) programs as they plan projects to get youth involved.
So… scroll down to check out the 10 Ways to get Youth Involved in your Service Projects. #10 is my favorite and my secret to every successful youth event.
New here? I also have the following blog posts to help with your Schools that R.O.C.K. program.
This post is for you if…
- You are planning or helping plan a service project
- You want youth (ages 5-25) to be involved in your project
- You are ready to try some new ideas to increase participation in your service event.
This post is NOT for you if…
- You are not willing to change how you have been recruiting volunteers and publicizing your service projects
Get Youth Involved Tip #1 – Publicize at Schools, Libraries, Homeschool groups, etc.
You want to make sure that you let people know about your event. Post fliers and provide information to groups that serve the age you want to come.
Get Youth Involved Tip #2 – Promote as a “Service Hour” opportunity
Many schools, youth organizations, and even some State’s have requirements for students to complete service hours. By promoting your event to those groups as an opportunity will perk their interest. You will need to let them know what is required in order to get credit and be prepared to sign forms and verify that hours were completed.
Get Youth Involved Tip #3 – All youth get a certificate for attending
Some people like having something they can show for the work they do. Provide a certificate for youth attending and they can include this in their portfolio.
Get Youth Involved Tip #4 – Create a “Family-Friendly” Event
Get youth to events by having something for their families to do. Have a picnic, some music, and even some little games for younger kids with short attention spans.
Get Youth Involved Tip #5 – Offer a contest geared towards youth
Create buzz about your project by having a contest for youth. This could be shirt designs, a poster, writing poetry or an essay. Include the youth that participate and they will bring their friends and family.
Get Youth Involved Tip #6 – Publicize the “Experience” not the event
There are a lot of activities competing for youth and their family’s time. Don’t just talk about the project – make sure you promote what they get from their experience. This could include skills they learn, networking, and an opportunity to make a difference.
Get Youth Involved Tip #7 – Partner with a school club or youth organization
Organizations need activities for their students. You can partner with them and give them an opportunity to raise funds, publicize their mission, and fulfill other requirements they may have.
Get Youth Involved Tip #8 – Provide entertainment by youth dance group, band, choir, etc.
This goes back to making it a family-friendly event but it also helps get people to your event. When a youth group performs they bring their friends and family to watch. They can also participate in your service project.
Get Youth Involved Tip #9 – Work with Sponsors that appeal to Youth
Sponsorships provide a win-win. They get publicity, and you get their audience.
Get Youth Involved Tip #10 – Get youth to help with planning – Teen Advisory Board/Youth Council
This is SO important. By incorporating youth in the planning process you have their interest. You can read more about this in my post Tips to Help Youth plan Service Projects.