Apex PRD board creates volunteer Youth Commission
On Thursday, January 4, the Apex Park and Recreation District Board of Directors authorized the creation of an important new youth volunteer community service initiative. The Youth Commission’s two-fold goal is to offer volunteer support and service to the district’s programs, special projects and events; and to establish a direct conduit to youth so as to be more responsive to the needs of the community’s youth and teen population.
“Research tells us that youth in our country are volunteering in increasing numbers,” said Apex PRD Board President Jim Whitfield. “The involvement of this group with Apex events and programs will benefit the entire community in many important ways.”
Not only will the Youth Commission members and the community reap benefits of the commission’s energy and perspective, but the experience will provide skills and assets for a lifetime. Teens say the benefits received from serving in a voluntary role include learning to respect others; learning to be helpful and kind; learning to understand people who are different; developing leadership skills; becoming more patient; and gaining a better understanding of citizenship. Furthermore, youth who volunteer are more likely to do well in school, graduate, and vote.
“Young people are the future of our community. Therefore, it is vitally important that they are provided the knowledge, skills, and abilities to be the next generation of local leaders,” said Apex PRD Executive Director Lauri Dannemiller.
The district is accepting applications through January 31. To be eligible, prospective members must be residents of Apex Park and Recreation District in grades 7-11 who maintain a 2.0 GPA. Youth Commission members will serve one-year terms. In this leadership role, they will assist with community endeavors, offer recommendations on positive changes, and share ideas with their peers. Upon acceptance, the Board of Directors will appoint the members in a formal ceremony during a public Board meeting.
“The Youth Commission is an exciting new opportunity for youth to take a formal role in decision making, as well as a chance to develop leadership skills and learn how local government operates,” said JoAnn Gould, Apex PRD’s Deputy Executive Director of Recreation Services.