What is the Christian Service Program?
Through the St. Joseph Academy High School Christian Service Program students are provided with a structured program in which they can serve their fellow mankind in need. Potentially, the Christian Service Program will allow the student to serve Our Lord by actively participating in a wide variety of community service opportunities.
Does the student have to participate in the Christian Service Program?
Yes. Participation in the Christian Service Program is a GRADUATION REQUIREMENT.
How many hours are actually required?
Students must complete a minimum of 30 community service hours each of their four years at SJA. Transfer students may elect to have their requirement prorated in coordination with the number of semesters they attend SJA.
How soon can a student begin volunteering?
Students may begin accumulating service hours after they have graduated from 8th grade.
When do the students perform their service hours?
All service hours must be completed after school, on weekends, holidays, or during vacation periods. Students are NOT allowed to be absent from school to perform their service hours.
At what pace is the student to complete these service hours?
Students need to submit documented 15 hours (on the provided forms) by the last day of each semester, each school year.
Where does the student go to do service hours?
Types of service acceptable to the Christian Service Program would include: Volunteering with the Disabled, Elderly, Hospitilized, Homeless, Unwed Mothers, Pro-Life organizations, Parish activities, etc. Volunteer work to assist at school by tutoring, assisting teachers, etc. is also acceptable.
Can the student get service hours through helping people individually?
Helping a family member, who, for example, suffers from a serious illness or needs assistance with schoolwork, is NOT accepted in the Christian Service Program. This is considered a family issue and NOT a form of community service.
On the other hand, assisting a non-family member who is experiencing a personal hardship may be allowed as service hours. Whenever the student is NOT volunteering at an organization/agency, but is instead involved in a personal hardship situation, the service MUST BE PRE-APPROVED by the Program Director. Failure by the student to get pre-approval will result in these particular service hours NOT being accepted. It also must be noted that personal hardships can NEVER account for more than 25 percent of the student's overall graduation requirement.
Is baby-sitting accepted in the Christian Service Program?
Baby-sitting on a personal basis or when assisting someone doing daycare in their home is NOT accepted. The only acceptable form of childcare in the Christian Service Program results from a service performed at a facility that is publicly licensed, or related to a school or church organization.
How are service hours documented?
Service hours are documented on a provided form. Failure to do so will result in the form being returned to the student.
Is there anything else the student needs to know?
It is important for the student to identify areas of service that are of interest to them. While one student may enjoy volunteering at a homeless shelter, another may feel uncomfortable. It is also very important for the student to take the initiative. Lastly, many students in the past have used the Christian Service Program to significantly help themselves on applications related to St. Joseph Academy co/extracurricular activities, colleges, scholarships, and employment.