Now through November 5, the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards is looking for California's top youth volunteers of the year.

Students in grades 5-12 are invited to apply for 2020 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards if they have made meaningful contributions to their communities through volunteer service within the past 12 months.

“We’ve honored young people from three generations since this program began, and while the world has changed many times over, one thing has stayed the same: Young volunteers are doing remarkable, meaningful work to address the challenges facing their communities,” said Charles Lowrey, chairman and CEO of Prudential Financial. “As we enter our 25th year, we remain inspired by these young people and their stories of service, and hope that they’ll inspire others to get involved, too.”

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards is the United States’ largest youth recognition program based solely on volunteer community service. Sponsored by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), the program was created in 1995 to recognize the exemplary volunteer work of middle level and high school students. Since then, Prudential Spirit of Community Awards have been given to more than 130,000 middle and high school students across the country at the local, state and national level.

To apply for a 2020 Prudential Spirit of Community Award, students and certifiers must complete the online application by November 5, then submit the application for certification to their principal or head of a local participating organization, such as county 4-H organization, American Red Cross chapter, Girl Scout council, YMCA, or a Points of Light Global Network member.

Certifiers review all applications for their school or organization, then select a Local Honoree to nominate for state-level judging by November 15.

On Feb. 4, 2020, the top middle level and high school volunteer from each state will be named State Honorees. They will receive $1,000 scholarships, engraved silver medallions, and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., with a parent or guardian for four days of recognition events from May 2-5, 2020.

In Washington, a national selection committee will name 10 of the State Honorees as America’s top youth volunteers of the year. These National Honorees will receive additional $5,000 scholarships, gold medallions, crystal trophies for their nominating schools or organizations, and $5,000 grants from The Prudential Foundation for nonprofit charitable organizations of their choice.

“When students use their energy, compassion and initiative to improve the lives of others, they not only make a difference – they also set an important example for their peers,” said JoAnn Bartoletti, executive director of NASSP. “We’re proud to honor middle level and high school students who go above and beyond in their volunteer service.”

Applications are available at spirit.prudential.com and www.nassp.org.