One of the largest student-led high school service organizations internationally is Key Club. A growing organization with thousands of clubs in more than 38 countries, the impact of Key Club members can be felt all over the world. The club is a chance for high school students to become involved in the community with acts of service such as food drives, trash pick up, volunteering at local shelters, clothing drives, etc. Students also learn leadership skills by running meetings, planning projects and holding leadership positions at the club, district and international levels.
Key Club allows students to gain community service hours for many different reasons such as National Honors Society and the Abbey cord. Community service also looks excellent on a college application. The club also opens many doors for students to explore the community, provide resources to people in need and can build their resumes.
Students who join may gain many benefits for themselves also. According to Keyclub.org, statistics show that students who devote time to serving others perform better in school. Also students become more effective and confident members of their communities as they serve and learn that they can influence real social challenges, problems and needs. Building strong leadership skills with each opportunity, they take part in service projects, social activities and club functions. And lastly, service projects that engage students also can improve the school’s physical environment.
Key Club is the oldest and largest service program for high school students in the world. The club started in 1925 in Sacramento, California with only 11 members. Key Club was the idea of two Sacramento Kiwanis Club members, Albert C. Olney and Frank C. Vincent, who also were high school administrators. Kiwanis is a very similar non profit organization to key club. The Kiwanis club members approached their other members with the idea of starting a junior service club in the high school. And from there developed the now called Key Club.
The core values of Key club consist of leadership, character building, caring and inclusiveness. Leadership is being the person people look up to and leading groups and organizations. Character building comes in many different ways, such as everyday acts of kindness, integrity and teamwork to grow stronger relationships and communities. Caring for others is one of the most important parts of key club, inspiring and having compassion for others. And lastly, including people from different places and ethnicities to spread positivity around the world.
A member of Key Club Cloie Carmosino states, “I decided to join key club because it is a chance for me to get involved in the community with all the fun service projects we do every week and also to join a club FMHS has to offer.” At FMHS, Key Club meets every Thursday and members participate in weekly service acts including decorating place mats, encouraging notes and making dog toys. Students get 1 hour of community service every time they show up and participate in the club. The main officer Kaleigh Curickshank of key club states, “Key club teaches students how to learn to give back to the community and be a contributing part of society.”