Silver Cord Volunteers

About the Silver Cord Volunteer Award

The Silver Cord Program began at Valley High School in the fall of 2001 as a graduation award which promotes volunteering and community engagement. The Silver Cord is a graduation award available to West Des Moines Community Schools (WDMCS) seniors who volunteer each year of high school starting in 9th grade. To earn a Silver Cord students must volunteer a minimum of 50 hours a year at three or more non-profit organizations, events, or programs.

WDMCS Community Education coordinates the Silver Cord program and each year over 1000 students from Valley, Valley Southwoods, and Walnut Creek Campus submit community service hours through the program. All WDMCS high school students are encouraged to participate regardless of their GPA, rigor of course study, artistic, or athletic ability.

Why should a student participate?

The purpose of the Silver Cord program is to encourage volunteerism and give students an opportunity to experience the joy of giving back to the community. VolunteeringĀ  provides a constructive use of time, fosters the exploration of career interests, supports youth seeking employment and college admission, and gives new graduates the confidence to serve in leadership roles after high school.

When can a student start volunteering to earn their Silver Cord?

All WDMCS students are eligible to participate in the Silver Cord Program beginning the summer following eighth grade. To earn the Silver Cord Award, high school students must volunteer a minimum of 50 hours for three or more non-profits during every year of high school. The Silver Cord year runs from June 1-May 31.

How does a student sign up?

Starting May 1, incoming freshman can complete the online registration form to set up their Silver Cord account. Once registered, students will receive an email with information on how to log in to their online account.

Incoming freshman can start volunteering and submitting hours for credit for the next school year beginning June 1. Hours submitted before June 1 for the next school year will be denied.

Other students who are new to the district, or past the freshman year entry point, can schedule an appointment with Cyndi Bonus the Silver Cord Coordinator.

How does a student find out about volunteer opportunities?

The best place to find out about volunteer opportunities is on the WDMCS Community Education Silver Cord preapprovedĀ  webpage. New volunteer opportunities are posted several times a month and are well suited for students aged 14-18.

Current Silver Cord Approved Volunteer Opportunities

Approved Partner OrganizationsĀ 

Contact Information

Cyndi Bonus

Silver Cord Coordinator
Valley High School
3650 Woodland Avenue
West Des Moines, IA 50266

Rosemary Brandt

Service Learning Coordinator
Learning Resource Center
3550 Mills Civic Parkway
West Des Moines, IA 50265