Georgia Center Students Complete 3,200 Hours of Service and Employment This Year

Date: March 29, 2010

Students at the Walker County Ombudsman center in Rossville, Ga., are well on their way to earning more hours of community service than any other center this year. With 3,200 hours accumulated working on community service projects or for local employers so far, center director Jamie Turner is excited to see how many more hours students can complete by the end of the year.

“My staff members and I can’t wait to see what our students will accomplish by the end of the year,” Turner said. “This year’s achievement will help us set next year’s goals to provide even more service to our community.”

Ombudsman programs in Georgia encourage their students to engage in 15 hours of community service or paid employment every week. Even though students are not required to participate, Turner estimates that at least 85 percent of his students take part in the program.

“I’ve been very impressed with our students this year. One young man came to school and recruited his friends to help his elderly neighbors fix a hole in their roof after it was damaged in a storm,” Turner said. “That kind of initiative proves that our students can make a difference in their community and become responsible, productive adults.”

Students can create their own service projects, or participate in one of the many opportunities provided by staff at the Rossville center. So far this year, center-sponsored projects have included creating greeting cards for injured and hospitalized military personnel and collecting food and clothing for The Care Mission’s benevolence program. The students are looking forward to their next project, organizing a book drive for local nursing home residents and hospital patients.

Service learning is an important component of the Ombudsman program because service projects help students understand the impacts of their actions on themselves and their communities.

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