STUVOL – Student Volunteers

STUVOL, a programme of NHE, was outlined in the May 2005 issue of this newsletter. Among other things, STUVOL offers students activities through which they can develop their service spirit and grow into caring and benevolent people

STUVOL – Student Volunteers

Service-Learning for Grades K – College

What is Service-Learning?

Service-learning is a method of teaching, learning and reflecting that combines academic classroom curriculum with meaningful community service. It is coordinated between a school and a community service organization whether non-profit, charitable or governmental. Engaging students in service activities, service-learning offers an opportunity for young people, from kindergarten to university level, to get involved with their communities in a tangible way while using what they learn in the classroom to solve real-life problems.  Service-learning can be applied across all subjects and grade levels; it can involve a single student or group of students, a classroom or an entire school. Students build character, become active participants in their community and strengthen their thinking, discussion and writing skills as they plan, reflect on and document their activities. Service-learning curriculum units are part of a STUVOL program in NHE schools.A Service Learning Example 
Matt Oppenheim has put together a service learning curriculum unit for middle and high schools in response to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in the USA . The students investigate the racial, ecological and political issues that contributed to the tragedy and are given the opportunity to fundraise for AMURT as a response to the situation. The curriculum includes a power point presentation and a teacher’s manual to accompany it. An outline of the program follows.

•  Investigate the ecological, social, economic, and political issues impacting victims of Hurricane Katrina
•  Dialogue with a disaster relief team director from AMURT: The Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team
•  Organize a project that has the greatest value
•  Evaluate the experience – What have you learned? 

Questions for the Students to Explore

1. What do we already know about Katrina and how it has affected the lives of people and the environment of the Gulf Coast states? Describe a day in the life of a poor family in the disaster areas.

2. How has Katrina affected you? Do you have friends or relatives that live in the disaster area? What have they told you about their experience?

3. What is being done now to help victims? How effective are current services at meeting the survival needs of victims?

4. How are (a) environmental issues, (b) political & economic issues,(c) disaster management and (d) ethnicity and income issues impacting the victims

5. How does history help us understand what will happen from the impacts of Katrina in the coming years.

6. How can we support the most effective service? What are the best short-term and long term solutions?

Action Plan

7. Have the students contact an AMURT Disaster Relief Director. Ask questions to find out more about the situation and how to take the most effective action

8. Decide on a project in consultation with the AMURT relief organization. Make a plan, form teams and take action. Define immediate needs and effective action. How will victims build a secure life? What are long-term solutions that build sustainable futures?

9. Implement a project with your classroom to raise funds or take other means of action to educate people, offer your services, and continue to communicate and work with relief and community development projects


10. Think about what you have learned. Have you been effective at investigating the disaster? Was your service project effective? What did you learn about working together? What skills did you use in this project? What did you learn about yourself? What do you believe will happen after the disaster? Why? Think about government impacts, economic impacts, cultural and ethnic impacts, educational impacts, ecological impacts, and social impacts. What is the best scenario, the worst scenario, and the most realistic scenario? Build a case for your perspective

For more information or for a copy of this curriculum unit, please contact Matt Oppenheim at: <>


The Progressive School of Long Island (PSOLI) has instituted STUVOL this year as a required element of their new middle school. The children have 1-2 periods a week of STUVOL. They meet in groups of about 8 students (ages 11-13) with a staff representative. So far each group has taken on both a collective service project and an individual service project. Naturally the Hurricane has attracted a lot of sympathy, so personalized care packages are being made by all students in the school under the direction of STUVOL. They have also raised $400 for AMURT so far through bake sales.

AMGK is preparing STUOVL Guidelines for Grade K – 12. If you would like a copy of the current outline, or if you have input you would like to contribute, please write to <>

New STUVOL booklets for KG 1 and KG 2 have been prepared for Delhi sector with material mostly taken from Circle of Love. Work on elementary level will be next.