YAC Service Projects

 

YAC Service Projects

 
 
YAC participates in a variety of community service projects that change slightly based on each school year. These are the service projects from 2018-19 year:
    Recruitment Meeting
    This is an introductory meeting for YAC. We begin planning and making decorations for the Thanksgiving meal at the First Presbyterian Church in Alma. Additionally, we hand out important information for the year like a contact form, membership form, and the YAC calendar. 

    Community Thanksgiving Meal
    YACers rise early on Thanksgiving morning to peel hundreds of potatoes in preparation for Community Cafe's annual meal at Alma's First Presbyterian Church. They also help to set up, decorate, serve, and welcome guests.  

    Holiday Fun at Masonic Pathways
    YAC often works with Masonic Pathways to reach out to residents at this local senior living center. YACers assemble and decorate the trees that adorn the chapel, halls, and common rooms at Masonic Pathways each winter. Members also enjoy going door-to-door caroling with residents to spread the holiday cheer.

    Foster Closet
    A first ever service project for our YACers, we went to St. Louis and helped organize, sort, and move clothes, toys, and other items. Before we began we learned from the director and volunteers about their mission and what they are doing for our community. 
     
    Valentine Ball
    Formerly known as the Senior Prom, YACers decorate the chapel at the Masonic Pathways with Valentine decorations. We dance and have a good time with residents in our formal prom attire.

    STEM Kits
    In honor of education month, YACers decided to make STEM Kits that were delivered to every fourth grade classroom in Gratiot County. Each kit had supplies and instructions to build a tower as high as they could to help Hoppy. YACers packed these kits with all of the necessary items.

    Environmental Clean-up
    YACers picked up trash along the Pine River Bike Trail. We were able to fill about ten trash bags with garbage. 

    Each year YAC has a Talent Showcase that includes projects, pictures, and videos from the year. We invite students who receive grants that we award to participate as well. It is a great way for the community to see local talent and the hard work that YAC has done throughout the year. 

     

    Pictures from YAC Meetings

     
     

    Clash for Kids - YACers Serving during the Summer

     

    The Gratiot County Community Foundation’s Youth Advisory Council launched the first ever Clash for Kids fundraiser to fight childhood hunger.  The event capitalized on the excitement over the season opener between two powerhouse football dynasties—Pewamo Westphalia and Ithaca. While the final score was a disappointment to local fans, the fundraiser was a huge success raising more than $10,000 for the cause.  

    The idea for Clash for Kids came from Dr. Michael Stack and his son, Ithaca High School Junior Camran Stack. Realizing that underprivileged kids relied on the two meals they receive at school each day, they became concerned over food availability for those kids over the weekend and how that might adversely impact their success in school on Monday mornings and in the long term. With the support of the two football programs, the Youth Advisory Council, of which Camran is a member, agreed to coordinate the fundraiser.  

    Led by Camran Stack, youth met once each week throughout the summer to plan all aspects of the event; from budgeting and publicity plans to recruiting sponsors and volunteers.  “I was really impressed with the kids who volunteered for the project. Summer is a break for most kids, but they showed a lot of commitment and that translated into a really successful fundraiser. It was rewarding to watch them bring all the pieces together,” explained Tina Travis, Foundation Executive Director.  

    Funds were raised with donations from sponsors and a mini-kids carnival at the game, as well as prize raffle and 50/50 tickets sold at the game. The support of “Varsity” level sponsors Family Medical Care-Ithaca, MidMichigan Medical Center-Gratiot, Garr Tool, Steve and Kristin Bakker and Marita Hattem-Shiffman and Randy Shiffman was key to beating the $10,000 goal.  Many other businesses made donations of cash and prizes for the event.  

    Businesses and organizations provided fun and games for kids at the mini-carnival.  De Saegher Dairy provided a bounce house in the shape of a cow and a “fake” cow that kids could milk adding a very unique aspect to the event. The Optimist Club, Kiwanis Club, YAC, Child Advocacy and JCPenney provided temporary tattoos, games and more to round out the mini-carnival.  

    Camran Stack added, “The Clash for Kids fundraiser was a good step toward uplifting Gratiot County.  We hope to continue the event in order to further benefit local youth.” The monies raised will support weekend food programs in Gratiot County schools. Programs like Project FULL (serving Ithaca and Fulton), Weekend Care (serving Breckenridge), Project PAWS (serving Alma), Food Bag Program (St. Louis), as well a program in Ashley, will receive grants to buy food for underprivileged kids. The food will be sent home with them over the weekend when school breakfasts and lunches are not available.

    We are excited to announce we will be doing this again during the summer of 2019. We have begun planning this years Clash for Kids that is going to be held on August 29, 2019 at the Ithaca football field. JV will kick off at 4pm. We hope to see you there!

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