Global Leaders has been developing its local programming since the inception of it’s International Leadership Program 17 years ago. Since then, it has gained strength from community partnerships and service opportunities that have multiplied and developed over the years, and has recently created an independent Local Leadership Program. As with all GL programming, the most important aspect of service-learning is the learning. This is not simply an opportunity to serve the community, but to reflect on and respond to who is affected or supported, why doing the service matters, and how to improve or expand it. GL pursues a service philosophy of humility – that any volunteer has just as much to learn from those who are served, and that those who are served have just as much to offer.
The Local Program, in both California and Colorado, effectively eliminates all financial barriers to participation in GL, as it is open to any willing and dedicated participant, free of cost. GL Local participants are also invited to attend any monthly leadership seminar or GL event, and are encouraged to seek leadership roles within our student leadership framework. This could include serving on the Executive Board, or planning and executing service events.
In addition to providing meaningful service projects and leadership opportunities, GL’s goal is that all Local participants graduate with the Certificate of Civic Education or Meritorious Service Cord. Poudre School District’s requirements for earning this recognition are graduating seniors who:
– Have completed 200 or more civic education volunteer hours or Service Learning (SL) volunteer hours,
– Have participated in at least four extracurricular activities throughout high school, and
– Complete a Capstone Project.
Why take part in the Local Leadership Program?
The centerpiece of the leadership program, service learning, is a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities. Many leaders in public service today speak about how they were nurtured, inspired, and shaped in early experiences with community service or volunteerism. The many benefits to service learning include:
- increased access for young people to the range of supports and opportunities (or developmental assets) they need to grow up healthy, caring, and responsible
- increased sense of self-efficacy as young people learn that they can impact real social challenges, problems, and needs
- higher academic achievement and interest in furthering their education
- enhanced problem-solving skills, ability to work in teams, and planning abilities
- enhanced civic engagement attitudes, skills and behaviors.
10 goals for GL Local:
- To engage students in responsible and challenging actions for the common good.
- To provide structured opportunities for people to reflect critically on their service experience.
- To articulate clear service and learning goals for everyone involved.
- To allow for those with needs to define those needs.
- To clarify the responsibilities of each person and organization involved.
- To match service providers and service needs through a process that recognizes changing circumstances.
- To expect genuine, active and sustained organizational commitment.
- To include training, supervision, monitoring, support, recognition, and evaluation to meet service and learning goals.
- To insure that the time commitment for service and learning is flexible, appropriate, and in the best interests of all involved.
- To be committed to program participation by and with diverse populations.
Want to plan a service event? Here’s how…
Have an idea for a service event in your local community? GL can help! Whether you are a former GL participant, or just a community member looking to help, we are always eager to expand our local service opportunities. For more information, please contact Laurel Baltic at firstname.lastname@example.org for Colorado inquiries or Andy Stuart at email@example.com for California inquiries.