The Pay It Forward Club
Our Pay It Forward (4H) Clubs are open to ANY student in Michiana from 3rd - 12th grade. This gives students the opportunity to make friends outside their daily school routine. It also helps with the transition from elementary to middle school and middle to high school. We have two locations, one in Elkhart and one in Mishawaka.
Students collect or make items for local charities. They have collected blue jeans, blankets, winter coats, food, personal care items, and animal food. They have made homemade toothpaste and bath soap for the homeless, crayons and playdough for daycares and Christmas stockings for veterans.
RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS
Our Pay It Forward Club goes out an does random acts of kindness also. They have left friendly post it notes on over 500 school lockers, left candy bags in teacher lounges, given out flowers at stores, left quarters on video games at arcades, made and gave out inspirational paper fortune cookies, went caroling at nursing homes, and blew bubbles at a surprise wedding reception.
The Pay It Forward Club also does a lot of community service. They have served at soup kitchens, helped raise awareness of homelessness, held a chili dinner to help a organiation that was a victim of embezzellment, helped re-paint after someone painted graffiti on a building, refurbished an outdoor classroom, built a sounding wall at a nature center asnd helped pack boxes for Feed the Children.
LEARNING NEW SKILLS
Students learn new skills in club that they can take with them for a lifetime. Students have learned to crochet, do woodworking, cake decorating, sewing, cooking, gardening, self defense and survival skills.
While having fun, students learn. They have learned how a quadriplegic may feel by painting without using hands or feet. They experienced inmobility and blindness through therapudic style horse back riding. Students learn about economics by receiving "paychecks" and having to pay bills while being met with every day challenges, often forcing them to become "homeless".
ELKHART COUNTY 4H
We offer students the opportunity to register with Elkhart County 4H through our club. It's not required but is an option. 4H opens many new doors for students such as entering projects into the fair and potential college scholarships. We do work on things during the year that students can submit to fair if they choose. We tie these projects into other projects where we can help our community. Registration for 4H ends in January each year. Our clubs run from September until May each year. We meet bi-monthly for 1 1/2 hours.There is not a membership fee to belong to our club. We do ask for dues at each meeting to help cover material costs.
Our club likes to help others but they also love to have fun. We have went to Potato Creek hiking and having cookouts, we've went tubing, participated in parades and have "games and fun" time at almost every meeting