Submitted by Ashlyn Simonson, VP of Public Relations
There are a million different reasons to do community service. Whether you are doing with your chapter, its court mandated, or you just love to help people, FCCLA wants to recognize you for all the community service you do. However, filling out award applications like the CommYOUnity Service Award or the Community ServUS Award can be daunting. If, like a lot of our members, you don’t think about awards until it’s almost time to turn them in, you might not remember all the incredible service projects that you’ve done throughout the year. Luckily, there is a way to prevent the panicky hopeless feeling you get as you stare at the blank application table and struggle to remember anything that you’ve ever done.
Step One: COMMUNICATE! If you let your advisor know your award aspirations, your advisor is going to help you with it! They want you to succeed and be recognized for being the amazing member that you are! They will definitely help you remember your projects from throughout the year, but if you’re really lucky, they might even help you do even more projects to up your chances of winning.
Step Two: Create a Google Sheet/Microsoft Excel. Make a three tier table with the following headings: Date, Number of Hours, and Organization. These are the three things you need to know for your applications. Also, if you’re feeling really fancy, you can make an equation so that as you fill out your hours, the table automatically calculates your total hours worked. This will not only help you with FCCLA award applications, but it will also help you with scholarship and college applications! Woo-hoo for getting recognized!
Step Three: Fill out said document. I had this handy-dandy doc ready to go! However, I proceeded to not open it again until January. Not exactly helpful. Luckily, I have a super amazing advisor and NHS sponsor who were willing to help me sort everything back out. I highly do not recommend this path, so just fill it out as you go.
Step Four: Do not wait until the last day in February to fill out this application. You do need the signatures of the leaders of every organization you include in your application, so you need to give yourself time to get those.
If you’ve absorbed all the knowledge I’ve bestowed on you, you are good to go! I can’t wait to see all of my lovely members being recognized at SLC…even though that’s totally NOT why we do community service!