Turning Ideas into Action
The Reach Out Iowa network comprised of youth and adults located across the state of Iowa that are committed to helping and strengthening their communities through Service-Learning. Reach Out Iowa staff are available to provide Service-Learning trainings, orientations, and resources for your youth group, even if you are not a 4-H club. For more information, contact a Reach Out Iowa Coordinator today!
What is Service-Learning?
Service-Learning is a strategy that integrates community needs, intentional learning objectives, and structured opportunities for reflection. Service-Learning projects take community service or volunteer projects to the next level by emphasizing both service and learning to create a more meaningful experience for youth.
For more information, check out, Service-Learning in Community-Based Organizations: A Practical Guide to Starting and Sustaining High-Quality Programs.
How Does Service-Learning Differ from Community Service?
- Are developed by youth and focus on what they see as important community needs
- Help the community while providing a powerful learning opportunity for youth
- Allow youth to connect learning outcomes and skills to real world experiences
- Are typically not “one-time” efforts
Community Service – Youth prepare and serve a meal at a local homeless shelter.
Service-Learning – Youth research homelessness in their community and contact local homeless shelters to learn about the types of services they provide. Youth then decide together on a service project that will support this community need. After planning and completing the service project, youth reflect upon both the Service-Learning process and the service project.