Community First  

    Mill Valley Middle School's Community First Program

    “The best way to find yourself...is to lose yourself in the service of others.

    - Mahatma Gandhi


    What can your student do to put Community First?
    Get involved throughout the school year with volunteer service opportunities that enable MVMS students and families to put their community first!  MVMS’s Community First program is designed to provide students with school-based community service opportunities, and supports independent volunteering at direct services organizations.

    MVMS students have told us: they want to make a difference and have an impact on their world. By encouraging your student to participate in Community First at school, MVMS families have a unique opportunity to support their community, including: preparing hygiene kits for the homeless, conducting holiday gift drives for families in need, restoring unique ecosystems, and visiting and providing a memento of love and respect to seniors in our community. We host several brown bag lunch and learn events on campus, where students learn about service in a casual setting at their lunch hour.

    Additionally, MVMS students can contribute their passion, time and energy to local direct service organizations through self-directed volunteering.  Students gain invaluable work experience and share their talents, by volunteering directly at a community-based organization providing a direct service. Community First shares ongoing service opportunities with students in support of this invaluable type of hands-on, on-site, student volunteerism.

     May Day flowers

    How does MVMS define community service?

    • Community Service is voluntary and unpaid.
    • Volunteering at a Community First event on campus counts!  Community First events are listed in Panther Press, and include Help the Homeless, Holiday Wishes, Earth Day and May Day.
    • Volunteering on-site at a community-based organization doing direct service work counts!  Not sure where to start? Click on the “Ongoing Opportunities” link for a list of local organizations that need middle school volunteers.
    • Completing a community service learning project counts!  (Conduct a beach cleanup with friends and parents. Volunteer at a local food pantry.  Tutor younger children. Invent your own group service project!)
    • In addition to the internal rewards volunteering uniquely provides, students who complete their annual grade-level requirements for service are eligible to receive special recognition. (Be sure to submit for credit!)


    How do MVMS students get credit for their community service?

    Community First recognition is granted each year. MVMS students who achieve the cumulative grade-level hours requirement by May 15th, (and verify this by submitting a Community First Verification form) receive recognition at year end.  To receive credit for student service hours:


    What are the MVMS recommendations for community service?
    • 6th Grade: 6 hours a year
    • 7th Grade: 7 hours a year
    • 8th Grade: 8 hours a year
    • Cumulative (by 8th Grade Graduation): 21 hours (or more)
    • Note: Service must be completed by May 15th, to be applied to the current academic year total.  Summer service will be applied the following academic year.


    Still have questions?  Please contact the MVMS Community First Program at studentservices@ptsamvms.org.