Don't just talk about it — take action! Youth and adults can take part in meaningful projects, both on site and around the D.C. area. Anyone can participate, and youth are especially encouraged to take part in these hands-on projects. On-site projects will be located throughout the Washington Marriott Wardman Park and Exhibit Hall.
Most off-site projects will involve working outdoors. April temperatures in D.C. average 55 degrees Fahrenheit (12 degrees Celsius). Dress appropriately for outdoor weather and work.
You don’t have to leave the Marriott to serve! Participate in on-site projects in the Exhibit Hall and throughout the Marriott. Or join us in the local community for site visits and projects in outstanding schools and organizations.
You Great Big Beautiful Doll
Join us to create a toy
For a little one to enjoy.
Ours dolls to Playtime Project will go
To ones whose names we do not know.
So be a doll—we’ve a lot to do
We want to see the good in you!
Join us and make a doll to go to the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project. This project nurtures child development while reducing the effects of trauma among children living in temporary housing programs in Washington D.C.
Students Rebuild Water Challenge
The Students Rebuild Water Challenge invites you to make paper beads – every 20 handmade beads will provide access to clean water for one person in a village. The Bezos Family Foundation, through Students Rebuild, will match beads with funding for 40 water projects in Tanzanian schools and communities. Come and discover how paper beads are made and learn about their relevance in African communities. Make a bead or two, because every bead helps to make a difference in a person’s life.
Honoring Heroes of Freedom
The Richland Northeast High School Youth Action Council, S.C., in conjunction with the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Organization, will provide conference attendees with the opportunity to show appreciation to Veterans by crafting and signing thank you cards. The cards will be shipped to the VFW headquarters for distribution to Veterans from all wars. This project will also feature stories from Veterans who have participated in student interviews. We will also be creating cards to give to veterans visiting the war memorials during Saturday’s Day of Service.
Making Reading Fun
Reading is the foundation for learning and yet too many children enter school without the basic skills they need to learn to read. Help us make books come to life as we make reading fun for both the child and for the adult who is reading with the child. Assemble kits that include books and activities designed to make reading interactive, enjoyable, and to help improve early grade reading proficiency.
Make a Bracelet, Build a Friendship
Make a new friend's day. Come join us to create unique and simple friendship bracelets for yourself and/or for a new friend. The friendship bracelets will go to children staying in hospitals. We also welcome you to make a card to go with your bracelet, brightening up a patient’s day.
Join us to learn more about sustainable gardening practices that will keep you gardening all months of the year. Projects will include composting, indoor gardening and seeding, rain barrels, as well as herb gardening and more. Walk away with tools to help you maximize your experience and help create some garden gear that will be donated to a local Washington D.C. partner!
Achievement Kits for Kids
Students at New Foundations Charter School, Pa., are passionate about spreading the word about the achievement gap. Working together and everyone doing his/her small part can make a difference. Visit this on-site project to learn more about the achievement gap and help kids achieve through making games and other learning tools.
Urban Farming and Healthy Food
Washington Latin Public Charter School Environmental Club’s project demonstrates innovative practices for urban farming and healthy food options in order to change communities through local, organic, and delicious food production. Members of the WLPCS Environmental Club will demonstrate the progress they’ve made in building and maintaining an outdoor garden and three indoor Aeroponic Tower Gardens, as well as pioneering a new recycling program at their school. In addition to this, there will be live music and a "salad in a bag" activity.
The Power of Youth Voice
As a follow up to Capitol Hill Day, this project will engage conference attendees that participated in the Hill Day, allowing attendees to further reflect on his/her experience on the Hill, as well as engage all attendees in next steps to keep advocacy momentum going both locally and nationally, demonstrating the power of youth voice.
We know that service, service-learning, youth leadership, and civic engagement, combined with opportunities for reflection offers many benefits to learners. Visit NYLC’s own Reflection Wall located outside of the Ehxihibt Hall. Feel free to add to your conference learning with you own REFLECTION!
Tickets will be available for off-site projects and site visits during breakfast on Thursday and Friday morning from 8:00 a.m.-9:00 a.m. at a table near the registration area. Pick up Thursday’s offsite tickets during the Thursday breakfast and Friday’s tickets during the Friday breakfast. Tickets will not be distributed in-advance. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis. There will be a limit of two tickets distributed per person. You must arrive at the bus boarding at the 24th Street Entrance, 15 minutes prior to the scheduled departure of your off-site project or site visit. Attendees under 18 years of age must attend an off-site project or site visit with an adult mentor or chaperone.
Thursday, April 10
Service-Learning in the Nation’s Capital and Award Winner Tree Planting – Site Visit
Departure: 1:00 p.m.
Return: 5:00 p.m.
Experience the true meaning of Yu Ying – nurturing excellence – by joining volunteers at Washington Yu Ying Public Charter School for a community effort to enhance their school forest and nature path. Everyone is invited to take part in the annual National Service-Learning Awards ceremonial tree planting. Yu Ying, a Project Learning Tree GreenSchool! that was recognized as a national Green Ribbon School by the Department of Education, will have Green Team student leaders illustrate how service-learning is seamlessly incorporated into their daily regimen to empower them as life-long learners and 21st century change agents.
*Attendees will receive a boxed lunch for this off-site
Friday, April 11
Service-Learning in the Nation’s Capital – Site Visit
Departure: 9:00 a.m.
Return: 12:30 p.m.
Learn about service-learning in the heart of Washington D.C. at Paul Public Charter School, one of Project Learning Tree’s exemplary GreenSchools!. Participants will be directed by Paul’s middle school Green Team leaders in a school environmental mural restoration project and spring garden planting activities in the school garden and outdoor classroom. Find out more about PLT’s GreenSchools! program and engage with accomplished and committed teens as they illustrate the transformative power of service-learning and community empowerment.
Student Urban Farming Activity with Washington Latin Public Charter School Environmental Club
Departure: 9:00 a.m.
Return: 12:30 p.m.
The purpose of the gardening activity is to provide opportunities for student leadership, demonstrate and discuss eco-friendly gardening practices, and take part in planting new seedlings to grow organic fruits and vegetables for the Washington Latin community garden. The activity will begin with small group discussions about the nature of environmental stewardship, after which all group members move outside to begin preparing the soil for planting and watering three existing raised bed gardens.
New Orleans and Back: Pay It Forward Mission
Departure: 9:00 a.m.
Return: 12:30 p.m.
Inspire, motivate, and impact. Join the excitement and engage in a creative way to reflect on the similarities of our communities. Join Cesar Chavez Public Charter High School scholars in an experience involving art, vision, and empowerment. Spark discussion by creating “Globes of Inspirations”. The artwork created during this project will be donated to the Children’s National Health System to convey love and hope from all over the country.