Since Hurricane Katrina, thousands of young people from New Orleans have volunteered their time and energy by working with Youth Rebuilding New Orleans. Out-of-town students have been equally committed to rebuilding, with their presence felt via hard-working weekend groups, alternative spring breaks and service trips. Locally, YRNO has active chapters at Sci Academy, Archbishop Rummel, Jesuit, Ben Franklin, Mount Carmel and the Tulane University Center for Public Service.
These chapters have service-learning components in which students learn financial literacy and civic engagement, as well as the practical skills they learn at the build sites where they volunteer. They have been an integral part of our volunteer activities.
Here we spotlight some of our most active youth.
My name is Robert. I started at YRNO through Jesuit’s service project. We got to pick what organization we worked with and Youth Rebuilding New Orleans sounded like a good fit for me. I learned a lot. I’m very good with my hands now. I like working with the drills and the saws. It’s power tools and it’s fun. It’s not an easy job, but once you finish it, it feels very accomplishing.
My name is Joshua. I started at YRNO through Jesuit High School. You get to learn new things and how to do stuff you wouldn’t normally do at your own house or on a normal basis. I like building fences best. I do really well at that. Mr. Willie taught us and we learned pretty quick. We’ve been dying to go finish the fence ever since. Anybody else considering volunteering should definitely do it. It’s a good experience.