Photo by Emily Bixler
What is the ‘key’ to motivation? For students in KEY Club working to improve the courtyard, it is the drive to help within the community.
Members of KEY Club have met after school on a volunteer basis to clean up the courtyard the last two Mondays. While there, they pull weeds, trim shrubbery and otherwise beautify the area however they can.
“We’re just trying to make the area look nicer,” said junior Jose Diaz, a member of KEY Club who has volunteered both days so far. “It’s a lot of work, but it’s definitely going to be worth it in the end.”
KEY Club is a community service group dedicated to helping both inside and outside of the school. While members are required to volunteer at least ten hours a semester, many members working on the courtyard have already surpassed this.
“We really have a group of hard workers,” said KEY Club adviser Shannon Reisch. “These guys that are out here have volunteered at many projects already this year.
“They’re doing an awesome job, they definitely stand up to the challenge and do what you need them to do.”
The students in KEY Club have devised a variety of ways to promote volunteering opportunities. They use a Discord server to coordinate filling up the spots on some community service projects.
“We have a full group of friends that fill up the spots every time, trying to help out the community,” said Diaz. “It’s a lot of fun, especially if you’re with friends.
It’s a good way to just release some stress about school and keep your mind off school.”
The courtyard was suggested as a project largely due to its visibility to many students and teachers. It is next to the cafeteria and it is overlooked by various classrooms and the Perch.
“I don’t come over to this part of the school very often and I had no idea how bad it was and how some of the weeds were five feet tall,” said Reisch. “We just decided this would be a good project for us to overtake.”
After the club pulls weeds this fall, they plan to plant flowers, which might possibly be donated by teachers, in the spring. They will also sand the tables in the courtyard and paint them.
“[After we plant flowers] it can be an actual space that people can enjoy not only the beauty of but sitting out there,” said Reisch. “If people are eating lunch out there or doing work out there, or the art classes are coming out, that's just a nicer space to be in.”