Going green has been a benefit to Detroit youth for the past 20 years, but not only because of improvements to the environment.
The Greening of Detroit celebrated two decades of employing local youth in the community July 25, announcing that 2,000 boys and girls have worked in the Green Corps since 1998, earning a combined $2.1 million.
The Greening of Detroit puts young people to work each summer with jobs that include planting trees, cleaning green spaces, and performing other duties designed to create a more environmentally friendly city.
“Most of our Green Corps members join us for the paycheck,” says Lionel Bradford, The Greening of Detroit president. “But that changes for most of them as the summer progresses. They become more aware and engaged in the work and the impact of their efforts on the communities they serve. The Greening is growing our next generation of environmental stewards.”
Along with youth employment, The Greening of Detroit awards scholarships and apprenticeships though its annual college and career fair, helping to promote the study of agriculture and careers in the “green jobs” industry.
Sponsors of Green Corps include JP Morgan Chase, DTE Foundation, Grow Detroit’s Young Talent, Citizens Bank, and Nissan.
“The doors Green Corps opened for me have been the biggest blessings in my life,” says Clarice Hollenquest, a program scholarship recipient and Michigan State University forestry student. “Green Corps gave me connections, real life experience, and a chance to explore a field I never heard of before.”