Sustainability is a critical aspect of service learning for faculty, the community partner, students, communities at large, and the university. The goals should be to foster relationships with community partners while involving your department as well. Think if there are others in your department who might benefit from the relationship also. If interest and ‘buy in’ is spread across the department, there is increased chance of sustainability.
When planning service learning, set out to maintain ongoing communication and interaction with community partner(s). Be intentional about these relationships as it relates to your course, and work to grow and develop with the organization(s). Ask the community partner about their needs while also indicating the ability of your students. The service learning portion of the course can start small and evolve as the relationship with the partner also evolves over time (semester after semester).