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AmeriCorps Members Engage Youth on Lead4Life Renovation Project

Lead4LifeGaithersburg, MD [April 20, 2016] – Last Saturday, April 16th, students from Good Counsel High School joined RTMC’s AmeriCorps members Claire Durst and Lianna Harbeson in performing a facility renovation project on the Lead4Life nonprofit in Rockville. Lead4Life is an organization that works with youth currently in the juvenile justice system, to ensure they have a place to develop necessary skills and enable them to become positive and productive members of society.

The students all arrived bright and early and got to work painting the facility. Every single room got a brand new coat of white paint and one wall on the second floor got two coats of magnetic paint and chalk paint which will provide staff and students with two tools for improved communications and creative projects. Outside, students used bags of mulch, gardening tools, and various flowers to improve the front yard. To round-out the project, the staircase got a new coat of varnish and the front door was painted.

Overall, the students and their project leads provided an improved space in which students can learn and grow into mature and productive young adults.

This AmeriCorps project was created with express intention of giving local high school students the opportunity to become more engaged in community service, beyond the hours they are required to complete for graduation.

For some of the students, this was the first time they had ever done a service project of this magnitude and were thrilled with the opportunity to help their community in such a tangible way. As a bonus, students noted that the project provided them with an opportunity to learn new and useful home and facility improvement skills. At the end of the project, students followed up by asking about the next available opportunities to serve with RTMC.

“It’s great to see what kind of good we can do so quickly. More students should do stuff like this,” said Sarah Vellanikaren as she marveled at the completed kitchen.

Rebuilding Together Montgomery County AmeriCorps members Claire and Lianna hope that this project inspires all members of the Montgomery County community, but in particular young adults, to volunteer their talent and time on meaningful service projects in the community.