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Paper hands craft project to express a message of love and caring.

Service-learning projects can be quite simple and still send a big message.

In 4-H, we try to instill compassion and an attitude of service in our members.  One way we do this is through service projects we often refer to as “service-learning”.  We believe that as youth participate in acts of service, they learn to be more caring and are more likely to make positive contributions to their communities as they mature.  Some service-learning projects are more involved, but others can be quite simple.

As we celebrate the month of love, let’s each consider small and simple ways we can inspire youth to serve others with all of their Heart.



Acts of Service

Here are a few ideas to get you thinking:

  • Send cards to loved ones through the mail.
  • Take cards to nursing homes or assisted living facilities.
  • Trace hands on paper and cut them out. Write encouraging messages like “with love” or “because I love you” on the cutouts. Do small acts of service for family and friends and leave the prints behind as a note to let them know you’re thinking of them.
  • Experiment for a week. Try smiling at everyone you meet and see what happens.
  • Leave kind notes in a sibling or parent’s lunchbox or on their pillows.
  • Read or play a game with someone you love or who needs our love.
  • As a club, beautify a part of your community by planting flowers or hosting a trash pick up day.
  • Bake cookies or take treats to a neighbor.

By encouraging 4-H youth to serve in any large or small way they can, we help them build essential life skills.  If you have other ideas you’d like to share or have success stories, please visit our Facebook page and leave comments for us.  We love to hear how you’re working “To Make the Best Better.”

For more information on service projects or other 4-H programs that build essential life skills in youth, please contact your local UF IFAS County Extension Office, or visit

Whitney Cherry
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