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  • Last modified 14 days ago (Oct. 4, 2018)

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Youth give back to community

Staff writer

Thursday was a day of good deeds in Marion, full of opportunities for high schoolers to work for the good of the community.

In the morning, 150 students were sweeping sidewalks, painting street curbs, and cleaning the stadium.

The Marion car wash was bustling when the afternoon hit, with students ready to volunteer and a steady stream of cars.

Instead of functioning as a fundraiser, it gave students the chance to earn some of their required community service hours.

A free car wash was something new, and it convinced owner Kevin Burkholder to volunteer his business, he said.

“When they talked about this, I just thought it sounded like a good deal for the community members,” he said. “Especially for some of the elderly people because they have a hard time washing their own vehicles.”

Burkholder would be interested in helping out if the service workday were held next year.

Doing volunteer work during the day gave students the chance to get hours without scheduling conflicts.

“The kids need this,” school librarian and co-supervisor Lori McLinden said. “There are some kids involved in other organizations, so they don’t have a chance for some of the community service opportunities.”

In addition to the service requirements, it gave high schoolers a chance to get out of the classroom, she said.

“The students couldn’t paint their parking spots this year,” McLinden said. “We had to find something for them to do throughout the day.”

Students were purposefully split up from peers to increase productivity and push them outside their comfort zones, she said.

“You may be with people you don’t get along with,” she said. “Challenge yourself and make a new friend.”

In addition to community service, students from each grade assembled floats for the Old Settlers’ parade.

The day’s productivity was aided by the absence of extreme heat, McLinden said.

“It’s a perfect day, it’s not 110 degrees,” she said.

Last modified Oct. 4, 2018

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