Youth get to work in Orrville

Published 9:51 pm Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The town of Orrville is giving its youth something to do this summer by giving them jobs through its summer youth program.

Orrville Mayor Louvenia Lumpkin said the program doubled in size this year and was able to provide 30 youth ages 16 to 19 with a job.

“It means a lot to me to be able to do this because during the time I grew up in the Orrville community we didn’t have these types of programs,” Lumpkin said. “I felt like Orrville needed to have some of the same programs these bigger towns have.”

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The youth went through orientation last Thursday and started working on Saturday.

“The children love it,” Lumpkin said. “We were out Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and they didn’t want to go home. The children called me throughout the day and evening asking where they were going to work at tomorrow. They are very excited, and they’re doing a wonderful job.”

The youth have been doing jobs throughout the community, such as cutting grass and cleaning yards for senior citizens.

“The senior citizens are very excited because each time these young people go out and cut their grass, that means the senior citizens don’t have to take that money they have to pay somebody to cut their grass,” she said.

“They just take that money and put it towards their grocery bill and they have more money to pay on their medicine.”

The youth are also helping out churches that have helped sponsor the program by tutoring children, serving meals, cleaning and other work.

“They partnered up with the Siloam Missionary Baptist Church and the church’s missionary department donated house fans, and the young people went out Saturday and delivered 20 fans to senior citizens,” Lumpkin said.

One of the places the youth are working at is the West Dallas Advancement Center, which Lumpkin said is feeding children during the summer. She said the youth will help serve food there.

Lumpkin said while the youth are enjoying working, it is instilling in them a good work ethic.

“If there is something you want you’ve got to work for it, and it really, really changes the attitudes with a lot of young people,” she said. “They’re so used to people giving it to them, but now they realize they can have more if they can get out there and work for it.”

Lumpkin said she hopes this program will give the good work experience and help prepare them for the future when they start applying for jobs.

“I feel like all the communities big or small need to be able to do the same thing,” she said. “What it does is prepare them for real jobs when they get old enough to apply for a real job, and they’re getting some work experience.”

Lumpkin said she hopes to continue the program for years to come, and it wouldn’t be possible without the sponsors pitching in.