We've all seen the stereotypical portrayals of pageant contestants, a la Miss Congeniality, spreading peace, love and beauty throughout the world. I say, it's a tough job and someone's gotta do it! So, why not you? Making a difference in the world is something that happens one relationship at a time, one hug at a time, and one volunteer at a time.
Miss USA 2018 Sarah Rose Summers. Photo: Sarah Rose Summers Instagram
As a pageant contestant and titleholder, you have a responsibility to lead and use your talents to instigate change. Community service projects are an important part of platform and paperwork development
, and nothing speaks louder than personal experiences. Your interview will see automatic improvements, as you will be able to speak about your community service contributions in a passionate and pro-active manner. Here are a few ideas to help you get involved and make a difference in your community.
Food Drive: Organize a non-perishable food drive in conjunction with your church, school, or community service organization. Food banks need help year round, and they know which families are in need.
Fundraising Concert: Use your pageant talent and host a fundraising concert. You can organize a group of pageant contestants in your state and present a show full of singing, dancing, poetry, and music. Take a free will offering and donate the proceeds to the Salvation Army, Red Cross or other worthy organization.
Children's Hospitals: Call your local children's hospital and ask if you can stop by for a visit. Host a reading circle and share your favorite children’s books, or perform your talent for the kids. They'll love that you took the time to stop by and add some cheer to their daily routine.
Clothing drive: Take charge and organize clothing drive at your church, local community center, or gym. The Salvation Army and United Way are great resources that can help you target families in need.
Support the Troops: Organize a care package drive and send a little love to our military. Partner with a local school and make homemade cards to send their way. Our military need to feel the love of home and you can help bring it to them.
Toy Drive: Reach out to Toys for Tots or your local mission and organize a toy drive. It is so important that no child is left with out a little magic, especially when the holidays roll around. The current economic climate not only means that more families are in need, but that donations are often down. See what you can do to make a difference.
Serve Meals: Volunteer at a soup kitchen and help serve meals to those in need. Not only will they appreciate the food, but they will enjoy the company as well.
Visit a Nursing Home: Use your talents to entertain a group of individuals who are often left feeling lonely with few people coming to visit them. Many people in nursing homes are missing loved ones and spouses, and truly appreciate when people come to visit. Call the activities department and ask if you can entertain the residents.
Bake Sale: Partner with your local Costco, Sam's Club or church, and host a bake sale to raise funds to buy blankets, coats, hats and gloves for those in need.
Prom Dress Donations: Organize a prom and pageant dress donation center. Encourage your friends from school and pageants to clean out their closets and help make the prom experience possible for young ladies who might not be able to afford a prom dress.
There is no wrong answer when it comes to lending a helping hand. You can make a difference in your community with a little hard work, determination, and compassion for others. Not only will you change the lives of the people you reach out to, but also your life will be forever touched by the love and gratitude they in turn share with you.