We all rise together. Operation Shoestring has educated children and inspired families for more than 40 years. Much of our daily work focuses on the 120-plus elementary school students we serve each afternoon from Galloway Elementary School. Because of the innovation and generosity of several board members and local businesses, we recently were able to expand our programming.
Through the Youth Employment Program (YEP), which was held this past summer, Operation Shoestring and its partners trained Lanier High School honor students to be top-notch professionals. These honor students learned the importance of financial and time management, they learned the appropriate attire for a professional workplace and the expectations an employer has for employees. Perhaps more important, they learned that the choices they make in school, at home, with friends and at the work place will determine their future. These students learned lessons of personal responsibility – and they embraced it!
After their training, these students worked at numerous Jackson-area organizations and businesses, including University Medical Center, Barksdale Cadillac, the Butler Snow law firm and The Clarion-Ledger. We were proud of the results of the program and of the press coverage it received (see the front page Clarion-Ledger Metro Section photo above). Over the course of the summer, these outstanding students gained valuable work experience. More than that, they realized that they could – and should – set their sights very high. The YEP students discovered that an enriching career should not be merely a dream. They learned what it takes to make it a reality. And we couldn’t be prouder of them.
In addition to their professional duties, these students pledged to be involved in their community. Nine of our YEP students were trained as docents for the upcoming “Jim Henson’s Fantastic World” exhibit at the Mississippi Museum of Art, which opens December 19th. This collaboration between individuals, nonprofits, business entities and educational institutions is an inspiring example of the work being done by Operation Shoestring. Thank you for your interest in our work and for making it possible.