Rams Challenge Students to Create Community Service Projects

Posted Jan 15, 2013

Kelsey Vaughan

The St. Louis Rams are not only known for their hard work on the gridiron, but also for their dedication and commitment to the betterment of the bi-state area.  This season, the Rams partnered with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to hold their first “Rams Effect” contest, which encourages local youth to embark on their own community service projects.

The “Rams Effect” is part of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Newspapers in Education (NIE) initiative that is designed to help teachers teach children about newspapers, how they work and how to use them.  The program encourages educators to use newspapers in the classroom as a supplemental teaching tool.

The “Rams Effect” objective is to introduce or reiterate to local students that they are capable of making a difference in their community.  By entering the “Rams Effect” contest, participating classes made a commitment to conduct their own community service project.  The projects were geared to impact their school, community or beyond in a variety of ways.  Ten classrooms were selected as winners, with one being the grand prize winner.  Each winning class received one hundred tickets to a Rams home game, with the prize winner also receiving a visit from a Rams player.  Judging was based on four categories: details of entry, potential impact of the project, feasibility of the project and creativity of the idea.

Schools were resourceful and creative, and their service projects made more than an impression on a variety of issues.  Whether it is writing a children’s book to give to St. Louis Children’s Hospital, collecting pop tabs for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or making a dessert each month to deliver to a local nursing home, children across the community learned the importance of service work and saw how easy it is to make a difference.

This year’s “Rams Effect” grand prize winner is the 5th grade class from Holman Elementary School.  The students created a “Get Fit, Get Healthy Literacy Night” that focused on a variety of health aspects benefitting both parents and students alike.  The 5th graders were interested in researching inexpensive healthy foods as well as exercise routines that can be implemented at home to save time and money by eliminating gym membership fees.  They spent last semester putting together a marketing campaign and presentation for their student-run event that is planned to take place mid-January.

As part of the “Rams Effect” contest, the classes also received Rams coverage every day from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch as well as a “Rams Effect” educational feature every Wednesday.  This feature illustrated how select Rams players and cheerleaders make a difference in the community.

For more information on how your school can get involved with the “Rams Effect”, please email  For more great ideas on how you can get your school involved with Rams initiatives, visit