DAYTON – For the fourth straight year, the Dayton Christian Center (DXC) will partner with the United Way of Dayton’s Volunteer Connection Center to host youth volunteers as they join forces for Global Youth Service Day. This year, Global Youth Service Days occur on April 15 and 16 with the DXC Bright Youth, Better Dayton project taking place on Friday, April 15.
As with last year’s project, the young people will be going about the neighborhood around DXC picking up trash and generally cleaning up the environment. Each student will be issued protective gloves and bright, reflective vests for safety reasons.
“Our mission statement is ‘Enriching and Empowering Lives, One Choice at a Time,’ DXC Associate Executive Director Sarah Williams said recently. “We see that as a quality of life issue as well as quantity. We feel that a nicer, cleaner, more attractive neighborhood is also a safer one, and one where people can enjoy life more and take more pride in it, too.”
According to Williams, last year’s event was a great success. She said that the students had a lot of fun, but worked very hard and that was appreciated by the neighborhood residents.
Begun in 1988 by Youth Service America and the Campus Outreach Opportunity League (COOL) and then called the National Youth Service Day, the program now encompasses more than 1,500 projects throughout the country. In 2000, the program was renamed the Global Youth Service Day and was very successfully extended worldwide.
“We think it’s very important for young people to understand service to the community and to experience the rewards it brings,” Williams said. “We work with a lot of youth groups from all over this part of Ohio and we’ve always enjoyed it. The young people we’ve had volunteer with us have always worked very hard and they’ve been a joy to be around, so this is a wonderful experience for us.”
Williams said that the students will remain within walking distance of DXC offices at 1352 W. Riverview Ave, collecting trash and debris, placing it bags and disposing of it at a central point. Time permitting, she added, the youths will be taken by the company van to more distant streets. If the weather is uncooperative, Williams said, the students will be placed in the childcare classrooms at DXC where they will work with teachers and staff members.
DXC began their partnership with Global Youth Service Day in 2007 and has held a project every year since then. DXC is a United Way Partner Agency and a faith-based community organization founded in 1922 by the National Baptist Ministries, USA.