YouthBuild Vermonters Celebrate Completion of Community Space

Tuesday, June 24, 2014
ReSource YouthBuild

According to Kim Phinney, Director of YouthBuild USA’s Rural and Tribal Development, nearly half of all 16- to 19-year old disconnected teens in the US reside in rural and mixed-rural counties and are more likely to become engaged in damaging activities. But in 91 communities across the nation, YouthBuild’s Rural and Tribal Initiative supports their development in programs where they learn construction and leadership skills, earn their GEDs, and become active leaders in their communities.

The students and staff at ReSOURCE YouthBuild in Vermont recently celebrated the completion of the Barre Social Enterprise Expansion Capital Campaign. Their work included the transformation of an aging granite storeroom into a retail and performance multi-purpose community space. U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Barre Mayor Thom Lauzon spoke alongside YouthBuild students as part of the celebration.

YouthBuild student Ben Fisher spoke on what YouthBuild means to him – “finally giving me a reason to get out of bed in the morning.” Ben also talked about his plans to attend the Community College of Vermont.

“YouthBuild helps young people succeed. And don’t we as Vermonters all want that?” asked honored guest Senator Patrick Leahy. Representing YouthBuild USA at the event was Andre Green, Senior Manager for Field Mobilization. In thanking Senator Leahy for his continued support of YouthBuild, the Senator’s response was instant and to the point: “How could you not?”