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Summer jobs help community

Today, nearly 40 young people in Selma will have the opportunity to work for the city for six weeks. That’s good news in these hard economic times.

This number is about half of what it was last year. However, with industry closing or taking furloughs in Selma since November, it’s a sigh that our youth have not been forgotten.

Earlier this year, Selma Mayor George Evans sent out a plea to local businesses to help with the city’s summer youth program by contributing money or adopting a worker. Despite their own hard times, many businesses anted up, showing their support for the program.

The donations brought in $10,000, according to Val Jones, director of the city’s human resources department. The Selma City Council approved another $10,000 from an already stretched budget to see the program through.

A lottery will decide which young people have jobs with the city for the summer. Council members, the mayor and the city council president will draw names out of a hat from a group of more than 200.

This summer, when you see these young people working, think about the experiences they are gaining; think about the future of Selma. Then, think about the business owners and others who made this work possible for our youth. That’s community in action.