Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids to host Global Youth Service Day project

Thousands of Michigan youth will volunteer to make an impact in their communities as part of Global Youth Service Day April 15-17.

In Grand Rapids, MI, the AmeriCorps program at Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids will address the issue of environmental education by introducing local kids to the idea of reusing and upcycling various materials. This project aims to increase student education about environmental issues as well as animal safety and welfare, focusing on the “reduce, reuse, recycle” motto. We will use creative projects reusing materials to increase environmental awareness and action, and to create future volunteers by exposing them to global and local issues and showing them how they can make a difference, no matter how small. Some of the projects will be donated to local organizations and others the kids will take home.

The project will take place on April 15, 2016 at Sibley Elementary.

Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids has received a mini-grant from the Michigan Community Service Commission (MCSC) and the Michigan Nonprofit Association (MNA) to aid youth across the state to address critical issues in their communities, including education, economic opportunity, health, clean energy and environmental stewardship, hunger, homelessness, supporting veterans and military families, and public safety.

MCSC and MNA, with support from Youth Service America, distributed $7,000 in mini-grant funds for 23 Global Youth Service Day projects that will engage 2,000 youth volunteers in close to 10,000 volunteer hours.

Established in 1988 by Youth Service America, Global Youth Service Day is the largest service event in the world and is now celebrated in more than 100 countries.

“Engaging youth in volunteerism is an incredibly rewarding experience for everyone involved,” said Ginna Holmes, MCSC executive director. “We are proud to support these projects and assist youth in making a difference in their communities.”

“When we share our time and talents, we solve problems, improve the lives of others, make new connections and ultimately strengthen our communities.” said Donna Murray-Brown, president and CEO of Michigan Nonprofit Association.  “This is a wonderful opportunity to learn from, share with and get inspired by one another.”

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The Michigan Community Service Commission utilizes service as a strategy to address the state’s most pressing issues and empowers volunteers to strengthen communities. In 2015-2016, the MCSC is granting more than $7 million in federal funds to local communities for volunteer programs and activities, including 29 AmeriCorps programs. The Governor’s Service Awards, Volunteer Michigan and Mentor Michigan are also premier programs of the MCSC. The MCSC is housed in the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. For more information visit www.michigan.gov/volunteer.

Incorporated in 1990, the Michigan Nonprofit Association is a statewide membership organization dedicated to serving the diverse nonprofit sector through advocacy, training, and resources. MNA manages multiple programs and affiliates including Highway T, The LEAGUE Michigan, and Michigan Campus Compact, and is a sponsoring organization for AmeriCorps State and AmeriCorps VISTA. For more information, visit www.mnaonline.org.

About Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids

Goodwill Industries of Greater Grand Rapids, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to changing lives and communities through the power of work. Since 1966, the organization has offered a wide range of employment and training programs to assist those with disabilities and other barriers to employment in developing their marketable skills in order to find meaningful employment. Its efforts are supported by revenue from its 20 and growing retail stores in a five-county area, as well as from monetary donations. For more information, visitwww.goodwillgr.org.