Centerton is a close-knit community located in north-west Arkansas and this is a very family-orientated environment which makes it an ideal place to raise your kids. However, despite the predominantly affluent status that forms much of its demographics, many residents are fully aware of the hardships faced by some children in the region and as a result several charitable organizations have been set up to help. Regular fundraising events are held throughout the calendar year to raise money for one charity or another which generally brings the whole community together to have fun while supporting those less fortunate than themselves.
One of the most reputable organizations of this kind in the area is Youth Bridge, Inc. which was founded in the state back in 1963 by a local Winslow businessman to provide home for abandoned and neglected boys. While it began as a small custodial-style facility that provided housing for a very limited number of troubled youths, it is still going strong over five decades later and continues to grow from strength to strength. This is a non-profit organization so its success is in part due to the generosity and support of local residents from Centerton and the surrounding areas who have supported its numerous programs and services over the last fifty years. These include the provision of emergency shelters, academic and social support, counseling, outpatient therapy and residential substance abuse treatment that have helped thousands of troubled teens and their families from an area covering eight counties in the region. In more recent times, the organization has successfully introduced a therapeutic group home for teens who have been caught up in the juvenile justice system and a transitional living program – like a half-way house – for young adults who find themselves homeless.
Abuse, neglect, addiction, homelessness, mental health issues and behavioral problems are just some of the issues that Youth Bridge has to deal with on a daily basis. It is therefore not surprising that they are always on the look out for volunteers who can help on a practical level as well as those willing to make a donation or raise funds on the financial side of things. If you have recently moved to the area and are looking to meet other local residents and to get more involved in the community then this is an ideal opportunity to make new friends while helping others at the same time/ There are no age restrictions to volunteer and people from all walks of life are welcome from housewives and college students to business owners and skilled professionals as the organization knows that everyone can make a difference of their background, skills or experience. Some roles simply entail providing admin and office support while others may be more involved on the fundraising side such as event planning and staffing as well as more physical jobs such as general maintenance around the grounds and household at one of several active facilities, however mentoring, tutoring and teaching are still key skills required key in many aspects of the work undertaken by Youth Bridge.