Agency: Boys and Girls Club of the Mohawk Valley
Volunteer Projects: Thanksgiving Feast, Community Clean-Ups, Holiday Dinners and Window Painting
Summary: During the month of November, youth volunteers from the Boys and Girls Club’s Rome site located at Bellamy Elementary School spent their program time preparing for a Thanksgiving Feast for their parents and siblings. They made decorations, invitations, placemats and dinner cards. They also made desserts for the feast. The 120 youth volunteers took great pride while working extremely hard to make this day special. On the day of the event, Boys and Girls Club staff joined the 120 youth volunteers in serving 300+ people turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn, rolls, drinks and dessert. It was hard work, but the general feeling of happiness had every volunteer smiling as they served Thanksgiving Day dinner to youth members and their families The families were very appreciated and thrilled to spend an enjoyable evening with Boys and Girls club staff and friends.
Beginning in July, youth volunteers from the Boys and Girls Club’s East Utica site on Lansing Street took ownership in their neighborhood and their city by aiding other organizations and taking the lead in cleaning up area parks, yards and the neighborhood where their club is located. On July 11th, they teamed with the United Way in cleaning up Proctor Park. In August they continued their mission helping senior citizens clean their yards. Their clean-up efforts continued throughout the fall, as they regularly raked leaves, picked up trash and swept the sidewalks surrounding their Boys and Girls Club.
Once again, youth volunteers from the Boys and Girls Club’s Utica Parkway site served dinners, bused tables, washed dishes and interacted with senior citizens at that site’s annual Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners for senior citizens.
Boys and Girls Club staff and youth volunteers from their Strough Middle School site in Rome spent the month of December painting windows at Staples. The 15 youth volunteers and staff thoroughly enjoyed themselves and felt it was a good way to bring children together (for a worthwhile cause) and spread some holiday cheer while making their community a little more beautiful and special during this holiday season. This activity has become an annual event and an activity that staff and youth really look forward to.