My new club helps GIVE back with meaningful experiences and service opportunities

During+the+STEM+session+on+Feb.+7%2C+then-sophomore+Minjeong+Kim+%28left%29+explains+the+directions+of+the+match+activity+to+one+of+her+students.+Even+though+in-person+tutoring+cannot+take+place+now+because+of+the+coronavirus+pandemic%2C+GIVE+club+members+can+still+offer+one-to-one+tutoring+services+via+Zoom.

Image used with permission from Irene Choi

During the STEM session on Feb. 7, then-sophomore Minjeong Kim (left) explains the directions of the match activity to one of her students. Even though in-person tutoring cannot take place now because of the coronavirus pandemic, GIVE club members can still offer one-to-one tutoring services via Zoom.

Minjeong Kim

I never thought about starting a club at Sunny Hills.

Though I’m involved in sports (I’ve been a junior varsity tennis player for almost three years), accumulated my community service hours for college applications and hold a staff reporter position in my first year on The Accolade newspaper and online news staff, the thought of heading a new group challenged me.

But when the director of Cal Give. Inspire. Volunteer. Educate [GIVE] Foundation in Fullerton, Hannah Huh, announced the idea of three volunteers opening a GIVE club at Sunny Hills during our weekly Zoom meeting on Aug. 14, I felt a rush of excitement.

As an establishing member, I saw the Cal GIVE Foundation develop from its start to the currently widespread organization.

With the meaningful relationships I established with students during weekly tutoring sessions and various outreach projects I participated in, I was able to become more engaged with the community.

Because I developed a sense of attachment to the organization and wanted to give other students the opportunity to experience the same relationships and experiences that I had during my journey, I decided to apply to become one of the cabinet members of the SHHS GIVE school club. To do that, I had to submit an application and a proposal document that I spent about a week writing, which led me to stay up until past midnight for several days.

When I submitted the necessary paperwork on Aug. 23 to the organization’s email address, interfering emotions of nervousness and eagerness led my heart to pound as I waited for the result.

Huh called my phone on Aug. 26 to inform me of my application’s acceptance, and I soon received a Zoom link on the same day to discuss further plans regarding the opening of the school club.

Relieved over the desired result and excited from curiosity of who my partners may be, I clicked on the link for the meeting. There, I met two unexpected yet familiar faces: my fellow juniors Rachel Lee and Alice Lee.

“As you all heard earlier from the individual call with me, you guys will be working together to establish the first GIVE school club,” Huh said.

After a brief introduction, we went over each other’s proposal letters that we submitted as part of the application process. Huh suggested that we revise my proposal document to use as a script for our ASB presentation, and the Zoom meeting continued until midnight even after she left.

I worked with Rachel and Alice to make the club constitution, applications and Google Slides before we presented our club to the ASB for approval over the next several days. We also managed to get English teacher Randy Oudega as our club adviser (after asking him during student support through Zoom) before we submitted our application form to the ASB.

Despite the amount of effort and preparation we have put in, we were all nervous when the Zoom meeting with the ASB came close.

“I’m kinda nervous right now,” Alice texted. “Ok we got this, and I hope we get accepted.”

As about 40 people listened to our idea and presentation, I was so anxious that I only realized that the presentation ended when ASB member Ellen Lee asked a question. A few hours after our presentation, the ASB notified us of our club’s approval via email.

“Our club got approved!” Rachel texted us about the approval email co-ASB adviser Mike Paris sent. “I’m excited for our club.”

I felt really grateful to have one of my favorite teachers as our club adviser and of the approval of our club in general. Enthusiastically, I envisioned what memories I would make with our new club.

There are currently 47 people enrolled in our Remind, and an average of 30 people join our club meetings every other week.

With the Cal GIVE Foundation and SHHS GIVE school club, I strive to foster an engaging and educational environment for students, continuing to impact my community. I look forward to meeting more students, tutoring them and continuing to be a better person and serve as their role model.

On Saturday, Nov. 14 at 7 p.m., we will be holding a YouTube livestream concert, titled GIVE Benefit Concert 2020, in hopes of encouraging community spirits by showcasing music virtually.

The concert’s repertoire will consist of eight soloists and 13 ensemble members composed of students and professional musicians. With any donations that the organization receives throughout the live concert, we hope to support Covenant House California for human trafficking victims and homeless youths, as well as for fund expenses to provide the Boys & Girls Club children with musical instruments.

I highly encourage everyone to watch the concert online that will bring a light into the boredom caused from the pandemic and take interest in our organization and club.