2023-24 Acts of Service Winners

This years Acts of Service winners have been announced. Below you will find all the winners and some information about their submission.

Overall Winner

Reach Out Campaign
Spanish Fort High School
Baldwin County

The Reach Out campaign is a seven-week campaign created by the students in the Peer Helpers classes at Spanish Fort High School. This campaign provides help, promotes mental health awareness, and encourages love for self and others. The goal is to “reach out” to students, teachers, staff, admin, and others throughout our community.
In short, the goal is to promote unity among our student body with a shared vision of “reaching out” with the aim of mental health awareness and suicide prevention.

Show the Way - Primary

Spreading Joy & Academic Excellence
Morningview Elementary School
Montgomery County

Greetings from Montgomery, Alabama!
I am delighted to share with you the impactful and inspiring acts of service carried out by our dedicated team of Peer Helpers at Morningview School. We firmly believe that our efforts deserve recognition, and we are excited to participate in the Acts of Service Contest.
Last Christmas, when spirits seemed low in our school and community, we took decisive action. Our Random Acts of Holiday Cheer campaign was a week-long celebration designed to uplift everyone's spirits. Each day, we dedicated our efforts to celebrating a different group of people in our community,
including teachers, staff, local nursing home residents, and first responders. Through various activities such as festive decorations, small gifts, and kind gestures, we spread joy and positivity during a
challenging time.

Show the Way - Secondary

Kindness Campaign
Rehobeth Elementary & Middle School, Ashford Elementary School, Cottonwood Elementary & High School
Houston County

Houston County Peer Helpers teamed up to spread kindness during the National Random Act of Kindness Week. They made daily announcements about kindness and issued a kindness challenge each day of the week. They participated in dress up days. They set up a Kindness Station during the break time and lunch time. Students were encouraged to fill out kindness notes and give to their staff or another student. They also built a Kindness Tree in the elementary school hallway. Peer Helpers went to each elementary classroom and gave a lesson on Kindness and passed out hearts to each teacher. Teacher were instructed to write students name on the heart every and anytime they did something kind. The Peer Helpers
distributed and collected the hearts daily. They put the hearts with students names on the tree each day and everyone at school was able to see it grow! They did a great job! They also made signs around the school to promote kindness.

Lend a Hand - Primary 

You Got a Friend in Me 
Highland Elementary School
Etowah County

As Woody tells Buzz, “You’ve got a friend in me. Yeah, you've got a friend in me” So, too, you got a friend in me at Highland Elementary School through our Peer Helper Program. Each day our Peer Helpers show
kindness to students and faculty in many different ways.
Highland Peer Helpers allow students to talk and share about their life experiences through sand play, imaginative play, art and games. Our Peer Helpers give students the opportunity to play and relate with them, whether it’s helping with other younger students during PE or connecting with students in the classroom. Peer Helpers help students feel accepted, valued and loved. Students learn that they are not
alone in their life experiences. “If you got troubles, we got them too.”
Each day Highland Peer Helpers help our kindergarten students get ready to go home. These students help our little ones put on their shoes, put up their nap mats and pack up their backpacks. They share a smile and uplifting words. “There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for you.”
When times get tough and students need encouragement our Peer Helpers are there to help with encouraging words. Peer Helpers create and display signs in our halls and classes to let students know they are valued and motivate them to do their best. Peer Helpers greet our friends and visitors with smiles. When times get rough our Peer Helpers are there to lend a listening ear, or they are by their side as they direct them to get help from an adult. Our Peer Helpers let students know, “We stick together and see it through.”
Highland Peer Helpers are there to let students know, “When your road looks rough ahead just remember what your Peer Pal says, “You got a friend in me.”

Lend a Hand - Secondary

Making a Difference One Life at a Time/Following Up with Mentoring
Sardis Middle School
Etowah County

Krisha has been a Peer Helper for 2 years and began mentoring Devin after she saw him in the lunchroom line crying. She brought him into the library and asked if he could eat lunch with our peer helper group. Ever since then, he mentors once a week/or more with Krisha. The two of them talk with Krisha asking how he is, if he needs anything, and lending a caring ear to what is going on in his life. Devin’s grandmother who was raising him passed away this year in front of him and he stated to Krisha that he is depressed
and “ I have nothing left to live for since she is gone.” Krisha used her Peer Helper training to comfort him, listen, and guide him to a trusted adult at school while reporting it to her peer helper coordinators. Krisha stated, “ Our Suicide Prevention Campaign and continuous training in the program helped me know what to do in his situation.” Krisha also made the following statements that she has experienced while mentoring Devin: “It has helped me see others’ lives and the challenges that they have. It helps me to see different perspectives and that everybody has something different to go home to.” When asked how she feels Devin is currently doing she stated that Devin has improved and is in a better place than when they first started. She stated, “The look on his face is priceless when I help with an issue.”

Be the Good - Secondary

In His Shoes  (Submitted by Student – Braylee Weindorf)
Robertsdale High School
Baldwin County

Early in this year, a teacher submitted an outreach form indicating one of her students needed to visit our care closet. Mrs. Foy, our peer helper teacher, asked me to pull the student and show him around our care closet. When I tell you this young man was in so much need, it was truly heartbreaking. He was very shy, but he looked around our closet and was in awe of how much we had to offer. He asked if he could get a new backpack and fill it with food, socks, underwear, and hygiene products. Then he asked about shoes. At the time, our men's shoe section was very small. We didn't have any shoes his size. I looked and noticed his shoes were in terrible condition with holes and the the soles were coming apart. I could tell he was embarrassed. Once he returned to class, I couldn't stop thinking about his need for shoes. I asked Mrs. Foy if it would be ok for me to buy him a pair myself. She said I didn't have to do that, and we could search for other ways to get him some shoes, but I didn't want him to wait. I left during my lunch break and bought him a brand new pair of shoes with money I'd be saving to spend on my hair and nails for homecoming. He was so moved when I gave him his new shoes. He tested up and hugged me, and I cried as well. I check in with him often, and while I know this act of kindness affected him in a positive way, it truly changed me as a human. I learned so much from this experience. I didn't do it for accolades. I did it because someone less fortunate needed help and I was in a position to do do something. It was the right thing to do.

A Creative P.A.T.H - Primary

SPLIT WINNERS

Student Led PATH lessons
Repton Jr. High School (1)
Conecuh Jr. High School (2)
Conecuh County

Our Peer Helpers at Repton Junior High School have really enjoyed introducing and teaching the PATH curriculum to the younger students this year. This helps the students to stay engaged and makes learning fun. It has also helped build confidence, vocabulary, and public speaking skills of the participating Peer Helpers. Another positive change within our schools as a result of student led PATH lessons, is the interest in joining Peer Helpers has increased and behavior has improved.

Our Peer Helpers at Conecuh County Junior High School have really enjoyed introducing and teaching the PATH curriculum to the younger students this year. This helps the students to stay engaged and makes learning fun. It has also helped build confidence, vocabulary, and public speaking skills of the participating Peer Helpers. Another positive change within our schools as a result of student led PATH lessons, is the
interest in joining Peer Helpers has increased and behavior has improved.

A Creative P.A.T.H - Secondary

REACHing the P.A.T.H.
Deshler Middle School
Tuscumbia City

At Deshler Middle School we created an advisory period called REACH. The first year a student enters our building, he/she is assigned this advisor. Each Friday of the student's career here at Deshler Middle
School, he/she will meet with the advisor. The PATH lessons have been a tremendous addition to the time
our advisors spend with our students. The REACH group is a small group of students because all teachers are utilized. Due to the smaller group, more connections are able to occur and students are more
comfortable to share with the advisor as well as the students they have had a consistent relationship with.
The lessons are easy to implement and students and teachers have given very positive feedback.