INDIANAPOLIS – The site of more than 400 teens working and collecting a paycheck was proof – if you give our youth opportunities, they will come.
The teens showed up for their first day of work through the Clean for Green program to help spruce up the city and earn some summer cash while staying out of trouble.
“You get this positive integrity attitude and try to work with other people. It gives you friendship, it helps with team work,” said first time worker Samantha Torres.
With violence on the rise in the city parents say this is exactly what Indianapolis youth needed this summer.
“I think we need more programs like this for the youth this will give them a positive atmosphere and something more for them to do. There is a lot of kids here today and I just love the outcome,” said mother, Lakia Craig.
The students will only work on Fridays for two hours a day. They’ll also receive lunch and have the chance to connect with students who may not go to the same school or live in the same neighborhood.
The program is under the umbrella of the city’s Your Life Matters initiative. They’re still in need of donations to keep things running and employ even more kids in the future.
“We’re all in this together. We have kids from as far as High School Road. 205 from the west side. One kid from Muncie. One of us affects all of us. So when you give to one child you’re giving to the whole community,” said Far East Side Action Coalition President, James Jackson.
Jackson is also the pastor of Fervent Prayer church, which houses the Clean for Green program. If you would like to donate to the youth summer jobs initiative, click here.