By Natalie Barman, NFTY-STR Social Action Vice President
One of the greatest things in the SAVP network, the thing that unites us all besides our love for social action, is the SAVP 2012-2013 Monthly Action Theme Calendar. Each month is assigned a monthly action theme. For example, this month, December, has the joint themes of drunk driving awareness, in support of Drunk Driving Prevention Month, and the holidays. NFTY-STR SAVPs are asked to program and create events based around this calendar. It is a unifying guideline that brings us together as a region.
Although I idealistically spoke about the calendar in my platform packet and election speech a year ago this month, it was only when STR’s SAVPs joined at LLTI that the calendar was created. Each SAVP received a blank calendar. During track time, we looked over various nationally recognized months and days and, from there, selected a theme for each month. Some months- such as this month- have joint themes, to promote multiple causes or events. Every SAVP who attended LLTI has their own personal copy of the calendar. At the end of each month, I post ideas and resources to help SAVPs plan for the upcoming month’s action theme in the STR SAVP Network Facebook page. So far, the response from SAVPs has been overwhelmingly positive!
Monthly action themes are a great way to promote social action and community service, but the thing that I value the most about the calendar is the community it has created. Our region is connected, whether participants are near or far, by common monthly projects dedicated to service and education. This sense of unity is what makes the monthly action theme calendar a special, unique addition to NFTY-STR’s regular social action programming.