Community Service Projects All High School Students Should Consider

As a high school student today, time is your most important asset. With so many
responsibilities, it’s important to allocate your time to things that will benefit you in multiple ways.
Volunteering and community service not only create altruistic benefits but also offer many
opportunities for personal growth and development, setting you apart on college applications.
Whether you’re passionate about animals, helping the homeless, or supporting local hospitals or
food pantries, volunteering allows you to give back to your community in meaningful ways and
equips you with valuable skills and experiences that are undeniably important as you embark on
your college application journey. PREMINENTE college counselors can help you find
individualized opportunities based on your interests, passions, and goals for the future. Below is
a list of nationally recognized organizations with which students should consider donating their
time. Click on the links to their websites to find volunteer opportunities in your community.

Animal Shelters & Rescue Organizations

1. ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals): One of the oldest and
most well-known animal welfare organizations in the United States, the ASPCA works to
prevent cruelty to animals through rescue, adoption, advocacy, and education programs.
Depending on where you live, there are different volunteer opportunities available including
advocacy volunteer, national field responder, action team member, pet foster parent, and
adoption center worker.

2. Humane Society of the United States (HSUS): The HSUS is the nation's largest animal
protection organization, working to combat animal cruelty, improve animal welfare laws, rescue
animals in need, and advocate for the humane treatment of all animals.
You can donate a monetary gift, become a policy advocate or an HSUS ally, or check out over
60 unique volunteer opportunities located all around the country.

3. Best Friends Animal Society: Best Friends operates the largest no-kill animal sanctuary in the
United States and works nationwide to end the killing of dogs and cats in shelters through
adoption, spaying and neutering programs, and advocacy.

Volunteer at their Sanctuary in Utah, at one of their lifesaving centers, or through any of their
national network of partner organizations. Volunteers under 18 must be accompanied by a
parent or guardian. You also can give back in other ways such as transporting animals,
fostering, or advocating.

If none of these locations work for you, local animal shelters and rescue organizations are
always seeking volunteers. Many communities have local animal shelters and rescue organizations that provide vital services such as animal rescue, adoption, spaying and neutering, and community education on responsible pet ownership. Start a club at school, spread awareness, and get others involved!

Homeless Shelters

1. National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH): NAEH is a nonpartisan, nonprofit
organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness in the United States. They
provide research, policy advocacy, and technical assistance to communities and policymakers
working on solutions to homelessness.

You must be 18 years of age or older to volunteer; volunteer and scholarship opportunities are
available annually at a national conference. Advocate on the organization’s behalf, spread
awareness, or donate to help the cause.

2. The Salvation Army: The Salvation Army has numerous programs and shelters across the
country to provide food, shelter, rehabilitation, and support services to individuals and families
experiencing homelessness.

As their website points out, “Whether you’re assisting at a shelter, organizing food drives, or
ringing bells at a Red Kettle, every act of volunteerism contributes to creating positive change.
By lending a helping hand, you’ll have the chance to uplift individuals and families facing
adversity, offering them hope, resources, and a pathway to a better future.”

3. Covenant House: Covenant House is the largest privately-funded agency in the Americas
providing shelter and other services to homeless and runaway youth. They offer housing,
healthcare, job training, and other support services.

Their “Sleep Out to End Youth Homelessness” program paves the way for volunteers to give up
their beds for one night to let young people facing homelessness sleep safely at Covenant
House. Volunteers can even create their own Sleep Out to support local homeless youth.


1. American Red Cross: The American Red Cross is a well-known humanitarian organization
that operates around the world. They offer volunteer opportunities through programs such as
blood donation drives, patient support services, and disaster response teams.

2. Ronald McDonald House Charities: RMHC can be found in numerous countries. It provides
support to families with hospitalized children. Volunteers at Ronald McDonald Houses and
family rooms within hospitals help provide comfort, support, and resources to families during
difficult times. Volunteers must be at least 16 years of age.

3. Local Hospitals and Healthcare Organizations: Think about your own community! Most
hospitals and healthcare organizations, regardless of their size or location, have a volunteer
service program. A quick online search for hospital or healthcare volunteer services near you
will direct you to local sites seeking people to donate their time and skills to support patients,
families, and healthcare staff in various ways.

Food Pantries

1. Feeding America: Feeding America is the largest hunger relief organization in the United
States. They operate a network of food banks and food pantries across the country and rely
heavily on volunteers to sort, pack, and distribute food to those in need. Volunteers also assist
with fundraising events, advocacy efforts, and community outreach programs.

2. Meals on Wheels: Meals on Wheels is a national organization that delivers meals to
homebound seniors and individuals with disabilities. Volunteers not only deliver meals but also
provide social interaction and safety checks for recipients. Additionally, some Meals on Wheels
programs have food pantries or meal distribution sites that rely on volunteer support. All ages
are welcome to volunteer.

3. The Salvation Army: The Salvation Army provides and operates food pantries and meal
programs in communities across the United States. Volunteers assist with food distribution,
meal preparation, and other support services for individuals and families experiencing food
insecurity. There are opportunities all over the country. Volunteers must be 18 or older or
accompanied by an adult.

4. United Way: United Way is a global nonprofit organization that works to improve communities’,
health, education, and financial situations. Many local United Way chapters support food
pantries and hunger relief programs. Volunteers can help with food drives, meal distribution, and
advocacy efforts. Across 37 countries and territories, people volunteer in their own backyards
through United Way. As their website says, “It’s global reach, with local impact.” Every day,
through activities like leading food drives, mentoring or tutoring students or helping senior
citizens file their taxes, United Way volunteers help communities to be stronger, more resilient
places where everyone can thrive.

Looking for More?

Consider volunteering at your local community garden. Help kids by participating in tutoring and
mentoring programs like Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, coaching sports or recreational
activities, becoming a counselor at summer camp, or offering your time and services at a local
reading program. There are so many ways to give back to your community, feel good about the
way you spend your time, and add depth to your college application.

By volunteering your time and skills to support various causes, you not only contribute to the
well-being of others but also develop qualities that colleges value in applicants. Get in touch
with a leading college counselor at PREMINENTE today to explore your philanthropic interests.

Contact us!

(917) 446-1987

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