Get students involved with Tzedek (Social Action) projects around your community by offering a program totally devoted to community service. Give students options of a variety of different projects so there's a little something for everyone. This program can be done on a small scale, with each project being done at different stations within one location. It can also be done on a grand scale, with participants being shuttled from location to location for an all afternoon event.
Some ideas to start with:
The plan: Decide ahead of time which options you want to offer and start making arrangements. For example, if you're planting trees, make sure you have permission to do so beforehand. If you need donations of any kind, the further in advance you call, the better. If you're planning an event where students will have to go to multiple locations, carpool arrangements or bus tickets are essential. For maximum participation, contact other clubs on campus and see if they would like to team up for a joint service effort.
- Tree planting on campus
- Construct recycling bins for the Hillel House
- Help maintain the exterior of a local retirement home
- Put together ziploc bags of donated hotel toiletries to give out to a homeless shelter
- Volunteer at a food bank for the afternoon
Making it happen: On the day of the event, plan to have a well-prepared teamleader at each project location to help keep things organized and the energy level high.
Strategies for Success: Keep in mind how long it takes to complete each service project from start to finish. If you're doing multiple projects, you want to make sure your participants don't get burnt out after the first one. If you're set on doing an amazing project that happens to take a little more time, just make sure your other stations are quicker.
Variations: An entirely enviromental theme could make a great Tu B'Shevat celebration.
For more information on how to get your Hillel involved with Tzedek, visit the Tzedek website.