On Saturday, March 22, 2014, the Chester Braves who are in the Warrior Guides program and the current RISE members joined forces to clean up the Chester Waterfront. The Braves also brought a parent to help with the effort.
About 150 people worked together for over two hours and collected over 800 pounds of trash. The children were led by Mr. Barron Lacy, Executive Director of the 9th Street Youth and Community Center in Chester. Barron had staked out the areas near and along the waterfront that were the most in need of clean up and he directed the groups to where they should do their work.
Each Brave worked beside his or her own parent and cleaned up the public property along the waterfront very close to PPL Park. The RISE members worked under the direction of Scott Strickling, the RISE Coordinator, and their small group leaders. RISE focused on the areas along the railroad tracks and throughout different neighborhoods.
All in all it was a very productive day. The children worked hard and accomplished a great deal. They found that their work drew the attention of some Chester residents, and although it made them feel uncomfortable as they struggled with what the spectators thought about them, they did feel good about their service. Some of the kids wondered if the people watching would think that they had done something wrong and were doing community service as a punishment, but Scott talked to them about the opportunity they had that day to be role models and community helpers.
Everyone enjoyed a soft pretzel and bottled water break, but for the most part, it was truly a day of hard work and community service. All of the kids hope that their service will inspire other Chester residents to give back and help their community.
Chester Water Authority
9th Street Youth and Community Center