Texas FFA News  
Rusk FFA Member's Annual Week of Service Generates Over 300 Hours    
Thursday, December 16, 2021 | Author: Texas FFA News

In one week, Rusk FFA members generated over 300 hours of community service for its members during their annual week of service. 

“We brainstormed ideas and came up with projects that would help our community,” said Allen Dotson, Rusk FFA Treasurer. 

This year’s week of service included members gathering over 8,000 canned food items for its local food pantry, providing shoe materials for children in Uganda, and putting together and distributing care packages for the elderly in their local nursing home. Students also helped the Texas Forestry Service preserve the habitat of an endangered species, constructed a habitat for the local wood duck population, and taught over 300 primary-aged students about where their food comes from. 

“I hope to further my involvement in my community and continue to grow more appreciation for the town I have grown up in,” said Tori Green, Rusk FFA member and Community Service Committee Chairperson.

The idea of starting a local service program originated after Rusk FFA members attended the National FFA Convention Day of Service back in 2013. Students who participated agreed that their chapter should try and do something similar at the local level. 

“Service is crucial to the growth of the community and is highly benefited to supporting the people that make up our support system,” said Anna Dyess, Rusk FFA Secretary. “These people also help many of our other activities as well.”

The concept of a week of service is simply to provide multiple community service opportunities to FFA members throughout an entire week. Over the years, the week of service has evolved to include events during the school day, bringing in donation items to help various community entities, and challenging other FFA chapters in a local food drive. 

“Through these service projects, we learn a sense of compassion for others,” said Aden Burkhalter, Rusk FFA Reporter. “This is something everyone should learn. It allows us to want to put others before ourselves and always look for ways to help.”

In 2021, Rusk FFA had 49 members participate in multiple community service events, and 75 students participated in at least one. Students worked cooperatively to generate 389 community service hours throughout the week!

“I think our FFA Week of Service will lead us all to be encouraged into committing to service even after high school,” said Xavier Torres, Rusk FFA member. 

If you are interested in additional information regarding the Rusk FFA Week of Service, check out this article written by one of their advisors, Brian Martin, that was featured in Growing Our Future: A Texas Agricultural Science Magazine.

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