Daily Point of Light # 3101 Dec 23, 2005

Youth Volunteers Corp of Prescott Valley, Arizona is a group of young people who are enthusiastic and energetic in their services. Their director, Cindy Craig, helps them correlate their programs and successes by her example, guidance and help.

When the United Way Volunteer Center started in 1991, there were few opportunities for the youth to volunteer. However, in 1992 the Youth Volunteer Corp (YVC) was created through Youth Count for the purpose of providing opportunities for the youth in the area. Since that time the agencies have worked together closely to fill community needs and at the same time provide a positive opportunity for youth.

The YVC has helped the Volunteer Center greatly n assisting the senior population in our area that are lonely or have physical limitations. They help to fill volunteer gaps and services. They have created the YVC Grand Friend program which connects generations at nursing homes with youth volunteers. The youth started a Second Wind Dream program, the purpose of which grants wishes to seniors. A 97 year old man received his high school diploma; several women became teachers for a day; four seniors were transported to a Hawaiian luau and hula show.

Youth Volunteers help in various areas. They work with environmental projects. They also volunteer at the visually impaired and hard of hearing center & have learned sign language to assist in their communication with those impaired. Some of our youth have the privilege of youth board members, served on mayor’s councils, governor’s task forces as America’s Promise Ambassadors.

While many of the agencies struggle to sustain their programs, the Youth Volunteer Corps is teaching the students to write mini grants. The Community Foundation has awarded grants to the Youth in Philanthropy program. They have also awarded a research grant to study youth run businesses.

The Youth Volunteer Corps is an invaluable resource to the community. Because of their dedication, they have received the Governor’s Youth Group award the past two years, Generations United Outstanding Youth award for intergenerational programs, President’s Volunteer Service Award for groups and individuals, and Channel 13 Best new series for TraX TV.