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Tips & Advice

Service Projects on a Budget

Calling all college students! As a college student, many of us are short on money, and in order to give back to others, sometimes money needs to be involved. From my past experiences, I have run across some free or inexpensive service projects that I enjoyed participating and would like to share a few with you.

Make blankets: Offer to sew blankets to donate to the hospital. Most of the patients there are in stressful situations, but being able to provide a handmade blanket can brighten anyone’s day. Once you have made the blankets, ask can you personally deliver them, and if not, attach a friendly card with the blanket.

Teach your talent: Do you have a special talent that you would like to teach to young kids? Gather a group of students, who would like to share their talents with others and call a daycare or after school program to see if you could teach weekly lessons on your favorite hobby.

Be creative: Create your own greeting cards. It can be simple and sweet or long, meaningful, and inspirational. Ask can you hand them out at a nursing home or a soup kitchen. It is guaranteed to put a smile on someone’s face.

Plan a food drive: Contact everyone you can on campus and invite them to a specific location. Before they come, have a scavenger hunt list with items such as canned food and boxed dinners. Split everyone into teams and give each team a list. The teams should go door-to-door, asking neighbors for the items. The first team to return with everything on the list wins! Be sure to donate all of the food to a food bank.

Visit a nursing home: With your friends or a club, contact a retirement home and plan a dinner and game party with them. Have some people prepare the food, have some serve it, and have others organize the games. This allows everyone to interact with the senior citizens, and you can also award prizes to the winners of the games.

These are just a few of the service projects that I have participated in. Of course there are plenty more ways to give back by just donating your time, but if you haven’t done any of the projects, try one, I’ll guarantee you will enjoy it!