Connecticut Youth Group Makes Impact On Homes And Hearts - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

07/02/04

Connecticut Youth Group Makes Impact On Homes And Hearts

Some may see these teens as simply a church youth group from Wilton, Connecticut. But the people here on 19th Street in the Soria City community see them as young heroes.

"If I had one word to say, I would say 'awesome.' That's a new word of mine but it's a blessing to see these kids, I'm getting sentimental, to see these kids just coming together and working together in the community. I see them learning but I also see them helping the community and I'm hoping that this will inspire my community Soria City which I am part of that community just working together," said Soria City Civic Organization president Dorothy McClendon.

The youth group and the community became a family over the last six days.

That's because this group of 66 teens and 16 adults were out on a daily basis painting and repairing the homes of seven families.

This was a volunteer project for the group, but group members believe they were paid in a different way.

"I think the sense of how appreciative everyone was. I mean there was so many people that passed by and said how much they just appreciate everything that we've been doing for the past week," said youth member Kelly O'Brien.

"I worked with a woman down the street and she was just so thankful for us to come, 80 of us to come and help her. She honestly, the fact that they say it's a miracle is unbelievable to our ears," said youth member Molly Desloge.

"We've always taught our kids that the most meaningful thing they can do in their lives is to serve others and its a great opportunity to put that in practice here in Mississippi," said WCC Youth Ministries director Ken McGarry.

And because of this unselfish service from their new friends from the North, the Soria City community says it will always be grateful.

The youth group will be heading out Friday morning.

And they say their favorites memories of South Mississippi are the shrimp, friendliness, weather, and of course, the Southern accents.

By Karla Redditte

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