LAMBDA CHAPTER SERVICE HOUR RULES 2020-2021
REQUIREMENT AND DUE DATE: Each Lambda Chapter member is required to earn at least 25 volunteer service hours by April 1 of the September-through-May school year.
WHEN MAY HOURS BEGIN BEING EARNED? Returning members who were inducted in a prior school year may start earning hours effective April 1 of the previous school year. New members may not start earning hours until they attend their first meeting, but they are not required to have presented proof of qualifying test scores or completed all of their required paperwork before they may begin earning service hours—attending the first meeting is the official starting date.
GROUP PROJECT REQURIEMENTS: The 25 hours must include participation in at least one group service project for the school year. Several group projects will be selected by the chapter and offered each school year. Members are only required to attend one group project per school year; attendance at additional group projects will count as individual service hours. An additional hour is granted for commuting time for group projects since the locations frequently are inconvenient, but commuting time may not be counted for individual hours.
WHAT SERVICE QUALIFIES? Unpaid, volunteer work performed at a church or non-profit charity will count towards the 25-hour requirement without special approval from the officer council. Such service is allowable even if it is performed with or required by another group such as the member’s church youth group or Scout troop, etc. Examples of tax-exempt, non-profit organizations include but are not limited to Second Mile Mission Center, East Ft. Bend Human Needs Ministries, West Houston Assistance Ministries, the Houston Food Bank, the SPCA, the local public library, and Pregnancy Resource Centers. Political campaigns or any internships do not qualify for service hours.
Service for a for-profit business, an individual, or a community organization without tax-exempt status is allowable only if approved by the sponsor and chapter’s officer council. To obtain such approval, the member must come to an officer meeting before a regular general meeting and present the proposal; an answer will be given right away. The last officer meeting before the service hour deadline is the second Thursday of February. The member may begin accruing such service hours before the approval is given, but he or she runs the risk that the hours may not be approved and therefore will not count for honor society purposes, so it is best (but not required) to obtain approval before beginning to earn the service hours. If such approval is not obtained, the hours will not count.
Only the time actually spent serving a charity or church is allowable. Therefore, only two hours may be counted for each FCHE Ministry Day, which is the time spent singing for and talking with assisted living residents; time spent commuting from one venue to another, taking group photos, or eating lunch is not allowable. If a member attends an all-day or overnight missions trip, only the time spent directly serving is allowable; personal time for meals, breaks, sleeping, traveling, etc., is not allowable.
HOW MUST SERVICE HOURS BE DOCUMENTED? All service hours must be documented on the chapter’s service hour reporting form with a signature and contact information from a supervising adult. It is preferred that the signature not be from the member’s parent, but if the parent is associated with the charity and no other supervising adult is available, a parent’s signature will be accepted. Service hours may be reported on multiple forms. Members are urged to turn in their forms to the Vice-President as soon as the 25 hour requirement has been met and not wait until the April 1 deadline.
VERIFICATION OF HOURS: The Vice-President will verify a random sample of reported service hours on each member’s form with the supervising adult who signed the form.
QUESTIONS ABOUT SERVICE HOURS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS should be directed to the chapter Vice President or the co-sponsors.