by Laura Drepanos '19
If you are interested in getting off campus and doing something that you can feel good about, sign up for community service! St. Mark’s does not have a community service requirement because the decision to do community service should be solely driven by your desire to help others. However, the school still provides students with many opportunities to live a life of leadership and service in this way.
If you are uncertain as to whether or not you want to commit yourself to community service, consider signing up for Our Father’s Table as it is the only community service opportunity that does not have a weekly requirement. Our Father’s Table is a soup kitchen in Marlboro that provides and serves meals for individuals and families. St. Markers who participate in OFT set the tables, serve the food and drinks to each individual, and clean up afterward. This is a fulfilling form of community service as your actions directly impact others, and additionally, you become familiar with the individuals who come for a meal regularly.
Another great community service opportunity is the Immaculate Conception after-school program in Marlboro. At IC, the kids really love to build close relationships with the St. Markers who volunteer. Volunteering consists of either helping the students with homework, doing crafts or games with them, or playing outside with them. Speaking from personal experience, coming into IC and seeing kids who are so excited to see you bring the best feelings in the world.
In addition to IC, there are many great community service opportunities to work with and be a good role model for kids. At the Boys and Girls Club, you can play with the kids in the gym or help out in the game, homework, tech, or crafts room. There are more children at Boys and Girls Club than IC, but St. Mark’s students in the past have really been able to have a significant positive influence on some of these children.
If you are interested in staying on campus for community service, the Lego League is a really great option. This is on Thursday evenings in STEM, and you get to help little kids build Lego robots for an hour. Helping children think critically and learn in this way can be very rewarding, and additionally, the children will develop close connections with the volunteers.
Lastly, our newest community service opportunity is Coding for Girls at the Trottier School in Southborough from 6-7 on Tuesday nights. St. Mark’s volunteers at this community service opportunity get to help teach a computer class for girls. In addition to the relationships you build, empowering young girls to pursue their passions in STEM is a really meaningful and undeniably worthy use of your time.
If any of these opportunities interest you, please contact Mrs. Wells or look out for the email that she will be sending soon. If you are unsure, I highly encourage you to at least give Our Father’s Table a try, and if you find that you like community service, branch out to the other great opportunities that the school provides!