Summer Work Project
In 2014 a community leader asked how we might expand our successful middle school leadership program to serve students entering ninth grade. After much thought and prayer, we provided a small group of students from Greensboro’s Glenwood community with something they all wanted but found nearly impossible to get – a job. We started small, only three students doing simple landscaping for a few hours each week in the summer.
Fast forward five years. In 2019 the Summer Work Project employed 15 students for over 650 hours. We painted outbuildings, stained wheelchair ramps and decks, cleaned gutters, trimmed bushes, spread mulch and needles, caulked, washed housed, did “trash outs” of cluttered yards, mowed and repaired decks. All our work was outdoors in the summertime heat. We served churches, widows, elderly and disabled adults, plus we contributed 300+ hours of labor to Community Housing Solutions.
In 2019 our students earned, on average, $400 each. Nearly all the participants are growing up in some degree of poverty and the money they earn is a real help to their families.
Students come to the Summer Work Project through our middle school leadership programs. Graduating eighth grade students who have successfully completed at least one semester of leadership training are invited to apply for the Summer Work Project and if selected, they begin work immediately upon finishing eighth grade. This is a reward, and opportunity, for students learning to lead themselves well.