Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – The Heart of Samson: Community

Name: Savannah Marie Gibbs
From: Samson, Alabama
Grade: 12
School: Samson High School
Votes: 272

What is community? I believe community is best defined by the word
contained within it: unity. When people come together with a common
cause and consider others more important than themselves true
community is achieved. Over the years, I have seen this quality
demonstrated in my small hometown of Samson through both tragedies
and celebrations. From an early age I was taught to love my neighbor
just as I love myself. As a member of numerous clubs and
organizations it has been an honor to have participated in activities
that benefit not just my community, but the state of Alabama.

My love for the community began to grow when I made the decision to
be a part of the Girl Scout club at Samson Elementary at the age of
six. As a girl scout I was given the opportunity to help bag
groceries at the local food bank during the holidays. The food was
then later delivered to families that would not be able to afford for
their family to eat their holiday dinner. Another gratifying part of
being a girl scout was visiting local nursing homes and singing
carols to the elderly that would not be able to spend the holidays at
home with their family.

Being that I love having the opportunity to minister to younger children,
volunteering at my church’s Vacation Bible School every summer was
one of my most favorite ways to leave my mark on my community. I
would be a “crew leader” and I would even be an actress in the
opening welcome. As a crew leader it was my job to take the kids to
each station and to be available to answer any questions about Jesus
or the bible that they may have. When the holidays arrived I was
spending my weekends, accompanied with others from my church, making
fruit baskets and delivering them to special people in the community
whom were in need of love. The most joyful part of this experience
was getting to sing Christmas carols and spend time with people who
rarely got the opportunity to leave their homes. Along with fruit
baskets and Christmas caroling, my church and I also filled Christmas
wrapped shoe boxes for kids overseas. This shows how community can
even be taken worldwide.

The Future Business Leaders of America partner with the March of Dimes to
help raise awareness for premature babies. In November of each year
the Samson chapter of FBLA hand makes baby blankets to carry to the
NICU located in Montgomery, Alabama.

Working the local annual Veterans Day Program was just one rewarding
part of being an ambassador for Samson High School. It was awesome to
be able to greet and recognize those who have sacrificed so much for
our communities across our great nation. As a “Tiger
Representative” I had the opportunity to help work the high school
Open House, the Samson Elementary School Field Day, and other
community events. Although attending local funerals is one of the
saddest duties I have had to undertake, I am honored to represent my
school and be there when neighbors need our support the most.

As a member and leader of the Student Government Association it was my
duty to help organize and carry out campus clean-ups and summer work

We should never underestimate small acts of kindness; for these are the
acts that leave the biggest impact on the world around us. Wherever
my life may take me I will forever cherish my community, and do my
best to live out these profound words I was taught as a child: “And
he replied to him, you shall love the Lord your God with all your
heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the
great (most important, principal) and first commandment. And a second
is like it: You shall love your neighbor as you do yourself.”
Matthew 22: (AMP)

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