RHS Student Group Strives to Help Community

"Student Leadership" has organized such events as Pay It Forward week and playing bingo with seniors.

Valley View School District 365U submitted this article:

An amazing organization known as “Student Leadership” is making a big difference these days at Romeoville High School.

“We want to help our school and our community as much as we can,” said Co-President Anthony Balderas.

“We can do that by getting as many kids as possible involved in the school,” added Co-President Daniel Quan.

Their most recent venture, playing Bingo with residents of Senior Star at Weber Place in Romeoville, was originally designed as a one-time Pay it Forward 365 Week venture, but is has evolved into weekly visits that both students and senior citizens look forward to.

“They really seem to enjoy us being there,” said Melanie Underwood, who is secretary of Student Leadership. “They love to have conversations with us about our school and what we’re doing.”

“After we finish, they always say thank you,” added club Vice President  Cierra Backstrom who pointed out the students not only play Bingo but they help some of the seniors who have trouble seeing or hearing.

Visiting Senior Star at Weber Place isn’t the only Pay It Forward activity Student Leadership members were involved in. They helped clean up, paint and organize the newly expanded Spartan Store that provides food and clothing to local low income families and to homeless students. Student Leadership members also helped write grant applications to IKEA and Home Depot for shelving, supplies and other furniture for the store.

“We’ve been helping spread the word to students about making donations to the store,” Quan said.

“It feels good to know you’re actually helping,” said Underwood. “You don’t always see the end result, but we know we’re helping not only kids, but also their families.”

Student Leadership’s biggest task of the year is organizing the 2013 St. Baldrick’s fundraising campaign which will culminate in the annual student assembly March 15. Details on the campaign will be forthcoming soon.

Other past and future activities on the docket for Student Leadership include:

  • Participating in the “white-out” event supporting the RHS girls basketball team at the game against Plainfield East earlier this month.
  • Toilet Talk (putting up flyers with messages about school events in RHS bathrooms)
  • Color wars (school pride competition between the freshmen, sophomore, junior and senior classes including a “Poster Boys” event)
  • Blood drives
  • Mr. RHS (an April 5 senior boy competition in a variety of categories including a talent, formal wear, casual wear, a dance-off and crowd choice for best knees. “It’s not a beauty contest,” says Backstrom.
  • Step-up day (a fun experience for current 8th graders who will attend RHS next year)
  • Spirit picnic (a fun end-of-the-year event for the class that receives the most “spirit points” during the year.

Student Leadership faculty sponsors are Krista Simpson, Nicole Cox, Danielle Deddo and Sarah Strode.



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