Pembroke to conduct citywide cleanup Saturday
The City of Pembroke is again joining in the national campaign Keep America Beautiful (KAB) by inviting citizens of North Bryan to come together for a city-wide clean up Saturday.
This year the national nonprofit is challenging volunteers to "Fight Dirty" as part of the 2008 Great American Cleanup Campaign for a Cleaner, Greener America. The campaign is the largest community improvement campaign nation wide.
"The Keep America Beautiful program is a great way for us to come together and show our pride in Pembroke," said Pembroke Mayor Judy Cook. "By helping to keep our city clean and litter free we can all feel proud of what a beautiful and historic town we live in."
Volunteers interested in joining the local effort are asked to meet up at the Pembroke Welcome Center at 8 a.m. on Saturday, April 26. The clean up will last until noon, then city officials will treat all the participants to a cookout. Trash bags will be provided.
According the KAB website, nationwide close to 3 million volunteers will campaign for a cleaner, greener America as part of the 2008 Great American Cleanup by participating in 30,000 community improvement activities and educational workshops happening in over 17,000 communities nationwide. All will spread the message of individual responsibility to keep America’s communities clean, green and beautiful. This is the ninth consecutive year that Pembroke has participated in the clean up.
Founded 1953 Keep America Beautiful, Inc. is the nation’s largest volunteer-based community improvement and education organization whose network of nearly 1,000 affiliate and participating organizations engages individuals in programs that prevent litter and reduce, reuse, recycle and properly manage waste materials. Through public-private partnerships and strategic alliances with citizens, businesses and government, 'Keep America Beautiful' programs motivate millions of volunteers annually to clean up, beautify and improve their neighborhoods.
Lions celebrate academics, service
The Pembroke Lions Club gathered last week to celebrate academics, dedication, and service. At the Lions’ annual banquet Lions Club President Lavern Scott and Lions Club District Governor Dewey Hayes, Jr. of Douglas handed out several awards.
The evening kicked off with the award for 2008 BCHS STAR Student to Howard Amelsberg, Jr. Amelsberg is the son of Howard and Helen Amelsberg of Ellabell. Upon graduation he plans on studying to become a preacher.
Amelsberg chose long time BCHS teacher Michael Owens as STAR Teacher. Owens was Amelsberg’s chemistry teacher last year. Both Amelsberg and Owens were presented with plaques.
According to the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) Foundation the Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) Program was created to focus public attention on Georgia’s outstanding students and the teachers who have been most instrumental in their academic development. During the past 50 years, the STAR Program has honored more than 21,000 high school seniors who have in turn chosen their STAR teachers to share in this recognition.
PAGE Foundation, Inc., was selected in 1994 by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce to coordinate the statewide STAR Program in association with the Chamber and the Georgia Department of Education. PAGE’s more than 72,000 members are extremely pleased to continue the tradition of recognizing Georgia’s future leaders and honoring the professional educators who have nurtured these scholars. The Pembroke Lions club has honored BCHS top students for over 30 years.
Each year a top academic senior in each participating Georgia high school is named the STAR student for that high school. To obtain the STAR nomination, students must have the highest score in one sitting on the three-part SAT taken through the December test date of their senior year and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average. Each high school STAR student is asked to name his/her STAR teacher. High school STAR students compete for system titles; and system STAR students in turn compete for region honors in the 12 STAR Regions. Region winners and their STAR teachers are invited to Atlanta to compete for the state STAR awards.
STAR students and STAR teachers are honored locally by their schools and receive special recognition in their communities from the more than 165 civic organizations and businesses that sponsor the STAR program. At the local, region and state levels, the PAGE STAR program unites educators with the business and civic community to honor academic excellence.
Also honored during the meeting was Lioness Marie Smith as the 2008 Lion of the Year. Smith is the secretary of the Pembroke club and serves the club in many other capacities.
"Marie helps out with everything," said Scott. "I always know that if I need something done she will be there. I am proud and honored to award her with the Lion of the Year."
Artie Smith and Billy Marshal were also honored with 25 years of service pins.
The Lions club performs a variety of community serves and raises money to help the blind. According to District Governor Hayes with each $1000 raised they can help 177 people who would be blind see.
North Bryan Chamber holds monthly meeting
The North Bryan Chamber of Commerce welcomed 39 members to their monthly meeting last Wednesday at the J. Dixie Harn Community Center.
Michelle Burris of H&L Business Solutions was the guest speaker. Burris spoke about her company’s programs for local business to help at risk youth through the Workforce Investment Act (WIA).
WIA was implemented in Georgia in 1998. It is a federally funded program for the community’s youth that aims to improve the quality of the workforce, enhance the productivity and competitiveness of the nation, and reduce welfare dependency.
According to Burris, H&L Business Solutions holds the contract to provide youth assistance in work experience, job readiness and basic skills. They work closely with local elected officials, the Workforce Investment Board, and partner agencies to provide leadership and guidance in workforce development in Bryan, Liberty, and Long Counties. Burris emphasized the work she does with at risk teens and young adults in placing them in local jobs. H&L Business Solutions pays youth $5.85 an hour for approximately 120-170 hours and also provides the Workman’s Compensation Insurance while they train in local businesses.
"The program provides the kids with work experience, building ethics, learning job related skills and acquiring the attitude that will enable them to become more employable," said Burris. "The participating businesses are not only helping the kids learn but also receive free labor, tax credits, and the knowledge that they are building a stronger workforce for their community."
Interested businesses can contact Burris at (912) 368-6482.
During the meeting chamber President Mary Warnell announced the chamber’s membership has reached 69 businesses with Laura Evans of Edward Jones in Richmond Hill being the most recent member to join.
In other business, Charlie Drake a Military and Family Life Consultant who serves the coastal Georgia area explained the Army Community Service program to the chamber.
"It is designed to provide support and assistance to active duty soldiers, National Guard, Reserves, military family members and civilian personnel," said Drake. "The program's motto is- Real Life Solutions for Successful Army Living."
Drake said that it was his job to assist people who are having difficulty coping with any number of issues related to daily living, such as deployment stress, relationship problems, reintegration issues, parenting issues, conflict resolution, anger management, relocation adjustment, work related stress, decision making, loss and grief, isolation, and anxiety. The program offers flexible appointment times, flexible meeting locations; it is confidential and done at no cost to participants, with no records kept.
For more information on the Army Community Service program call (912) 429-6367.
As the meeting came to a close local artist and chamber member Carol Duggar donated a colorful, original painting titled Crabber as the door prize for the meeting. The work of art was won by Tommy Flanders of Flanders-Morrison Funeral Home.
The next chamber meeting will be held on May 21, at the J. Dixie Harn Community Center in Pembroke City Hall. For membership information call 653-2244.
PCC to participate in National Day of Prayer
On Thursday, May 1, Pembroke Christian Church will be participating in the National Day of Prayer by inviting all local businesses to join in by displaying white balloon bouquets on their store fronts.
Businesses interested in participating are asked to call Karen Smith at 653-2457. The balloon bouquets are being donated by the church at no cost to the businesses. The bouquets will be available for pick up from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. at the church located on 160 W. Bacon Street in downtown Pembroke.
The church is also holding an opening prayer circle at 6 a.m. and a closing prayer circle at 6 p.m. All interested persons are invited to attend.
The National Day of Prayer invites people of all faiths to pray for the nation. It was created in 1952 by a joint resolution of the US Congress, and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman. In 1988, the law was amended and signed by President Reagan, permanently setting the day as the first Thursday of every May. Each year, the president signs a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day. The theme for this year’s event is Prayer! America’s Strength and Shield.
Skateboard park takes another step toward reality
Pembroke youth are closer to having their dream of their own skateboard park materialized, thanks to the Tony Hawk Foundation, which supports recreational programs with a focus on the creation of public skateboard parks in low-income communities.
Late last week, the City of Pembroke received word that their application had been approved for a $5,000 grant towards the construction of a new skate park on Lanier Street.
The Tony Hawk Foundation Board of Directors met on Wednesday, April 16 to deliberate and select this session’s award winners. Pembroke was one of 29 communities that received monies for the Spring 2008 grant application period. There were a total of 84 applications considered this period.
"We are truly excited about this project," said City Planner Wynn Carney. "It’s always great to work on a project that the community specifically ask for and will benefit so many young kids in the area."