Service Leadership Programs (SLPs) Aren’t Just Another Kiwanis Club Project
The Youth-based SLPs are Kiwanis Kids (elementary school), Builders Club (middle school), and Key Club (high school). The Adult-based SLPs are CKI (college or university) and Aktion Club (adults with disabilities). Sponsoring an SLP club is more than just writing a check and assigning a member to the club.
The Kiwanis Advisor becomes a role-model and a mentor to the members. The Kiwanis Advisor is the liaison and the face of Kiwanis to the school administrators and faculty. Kiwanis SLPs serve at the pleasure of the school (or facility in the case of Aktion Club). A very real partnership exists between the school and the Kiwanis Club. If Kiwanis fails to uphold their end of the bargain, they can be asked to leave.
So what is expected of Kiwanis in this partnership? A Kiwanian is expected to be at every meeting. Not some. Not most. Every. A real SLP committee within the club makes this easier to accomplish. The Kiwanis Advisor works closely with the Faculty Advisor to create an atmosphere of service project-based learning and leadership training. Communication is a key element between the advisors. Faculty Advisors usually need to learn more about Kiwanis. Hopefully, they occasionally attend a Kiwanis meeting to get a feel for what Kiwanis is all about.
Kiwanis is required to meet with the school principal (facility administrator) once
a year. Perhaps the best way is to invite the principal and the school district superintendent to a Kiwanis meeting. In lieu of that, the club president and the Kiwanis Advisor should call for a short appointment. School principals aren’t always aware of the SLP club’s projects in their own school, so be prepared to talk about the terrific SLP projects.
Kiwanis clubs are usually pretty good about inviting SLP members to help with a Kiwanis project. But more Kiwanis clubs need to be involved with SLP’s projects. It’s highly recommended to have a meeting between the Kiwanis club and SLP club leadership. The SLP officers have to be trained. Kiwanis clubs must ensure Key Club and CKI members are given the opportunity of servant leadership training beyond the club level. Ongoing leadership training is a reasonable expectation for all SLP members.
Service Leadership Programs are a club commitment. They are highly
rewarding for the SLP members and the Kiwanis members. Your Kiwanis club will get out what you put into the relationship with your SLP club.
For more on the 10 Basic Requirements of SLP Sponsorship, go to http://tiny.cc/n0u5rw.