Youth group cleans up Albany - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Youth group cleans up Albany

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By Christian Jennings - bio | email

August 6, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Triple digit temperatures couldn't keep a group of young volunteers from sprucing up Albany neighborhoods Wednesday. Thirty middle schoolers from Jacksonville, Florida spent the first part of the week working hard with Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful.

These kids from Beach United Methodist Church in Jacksonville Florida are still on their summer break. But instead of spending their time at the pool or beach, they're here, in Albany. "We just wanted a practical way to show everybody that Jesus loves them individually. We've done everything from yard work for elderly, to nursing home visits, to boxing up school supplies, to sorting stuff a thrift stores, to cleaning graffiti," the group's leader, Ryan Stone says.

And that's how their three day mission trip ended today, cleaning up graffiti on the 1300 block of South Jefferson. "I feel like we're really helping people have a sense of pride when they see their building or whatever and see how nice it is. It's a big difference. And you just know you were called to help," says Haley Baughman, one of the young volunteers.

And even though they were outside for more than three hours, they didn't seem to have any complaints. "It's hot but it's hot in Jacksonville so we're kind of used to it," says Rachel Wier, another volunteer with the group.

"We just have a lot of energy in middle school students and we don't think they're the leaders of tomorrow we think they're the leaders of today," saysStone. Leaders who didn't mind giving Albany a few days of their summer vacation.

The group heads back to Florida Thursday afternoon.

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