Neighborhood Group is Lending Helping Hands Where They are Needed
By Heather Thomas, Contributing Writer
Happy Helpers is a new group that looks to encourage children ages five to 17 years old to give back to their community through participating in a variety of community service projects. The group’s parent leader said that the group hopes that the emphasis on taking care of one’s community will lead to more opportunities for community service projects for the children.
The group, applying under the name Kids Helping Hands, originally planned to use the $100 grant from Start a Snowball to organize the clean-up of as many vacant lots in the community as possible. The money would have been spent on gloves, bags and sticks to assist the children to safely pick up the garbage.
The plan was to have the children work together to make a plan of what lots to clean and devise how they could maximize the number of lots they could clean in the four to six hours they planned to spend on the project. It was to be the group’s inaugural event, kicking off the group’s commitment to inspiring children to do good and volunteer. Somewhere along the way the scope of the project changed, and the children instead helped out at the local food pantry and humane society.
The group donated $50 to the food pantry, which lead to helping more than 100 people. The donation also motivated the start collection of supplies to host a food drive to further benefit the pantry. The group helped several animals at the humane society’s shelter through a donation of $20. The project was deemed a successful start for the organization because of how the group quickly gained momentum and built excitement in the community.
Happy Helpers used the remainder of their grant to enter in a local parade. The parade has the potential to put the organization’s name in front of thousands of people. The group hopes that it will lead to more service project opportunities for the children. The group has also been working with local senior community centers, coordinating with efforts to clean up public spaces, and food packing events for the pantry.