For Claire Severs, an eighth-grade student at Explorer Middle School, community service is a family affair. Actively volunteering with the National Charity League – Cactus Wren Chapter for the past year, Claire, her older sister, and her mother are involved in several community service projects and volunteer their time at Puppy Luv, Feed Our Starving Children, and Mom’s Pantry.

“My family has instilled the value of giving back to the community since I was a small child. My mom talks to us about donating food and clothes for the holidays every year. She has always loved us and taught us about giving back to the community. Last year, we were fortunate to have friends extend an invitation to join the National Charity League – Cactus Wren Chapter,” says Claire.

During her year of community service work and volunteering, Claire and her family have been able to work together while helping others in the community.

“We have donated time helping out at the animal shelter Puppy Luv, which was a lot of fun with the dogs. We also helped out at Feed My Starving Children, which makes food packages for impoverished children overseas. My favorite was Mom’s Pantry, where we packaged food for families in need and homeless families. Some families came in for food while we were volunteering, and it makes me realize how lucky we are,” she says.

If you want to get involved in community service but don’t know where to start, Claire’s advice is to volunteer in your community or just spread kindness. “There are a lot of organizations that appreciate our help, and you can volunteer with your friends and family,” she says.