The City of Greenwood Keeps Kids Busy This Summer
By Julie Hunger
For years now, a free summer program has been offered to the children of Greenwood and Leflore County. This year, the program will be offered June 3 through June 28 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Bettie Ray, Executive Assistant to the Mayor of the City of Greenwood, provided Parents & Kids with details of what can be expected this summer:
“All children must be between the ages of 5 and 11 and they must be registered by a parent or guardian at City Hall during the month of May, or after the program begins at Whittington Park.”
“The children are taken in groups to our City Swimming Pool for scheduled swimming time. Our Fire Department Certified Lifeguards are responsible for the pool program. Trips are planned to the Boys & Girls Club, Greenwood Leflore Library, the Recycling Center, and the Museum of the Mississippi Delta. Sports include kickball, tennis, volleyball and basketball.”
The press release went on to say that lunches on Mondays through Thursdays of the program are provided by Greenwood Middle School, and on Fridays, lunches are to be provided by either parents or a donor: “We have had contributions from local businesses and civic organizations. In addition, the City of Greenwood provides healthy snacks, beverages and water during the day.”
The last day of the program is for special activities, and the families of participating kids are invited to attend. The day offers “inflatables, along with a cookout.”
Before that all can happen, though, the city has to hire staff for the program, a process that is now underway:
“We advertise for staff applicants beginning in May. We accept applications from young adults, college and high school graduates, and high school students who have experience with child supervision. The Summer Program Director works with our Human Resources Director and Public Works Director to choose and hire the staff. Our workers must have a valid Mississippi Driver’s License and pass a drug test. Because this is a seasonal position, it helps our young people earn an income during the summer months without having to work weekends. All applicants must sign an agreement regarding cell phone usage and attendance. Employees must arrive by 8 a.m. and leave at 5 p.m., giving time to plan schedules and set up for the day and have a closing meeting and put everything away at the end of the day.”
“The City of Greenwood pays for tees [t-shirts] for all employees to wear while working, and provides all supplies and equipment needed as well as a van for transportation.”
It is these kind of programs that make summers easier — and more fun — for Delta families.
Julie Hunger is a native New Orleanian who has resided in South Mississippi for the past 20 years. Besides being a writer, she is a Purchasing Agent and Logistics Technician for a major industrial firm. She loves life, spending time with family and in nature, fishing, music and her rescue babies Maddie, Smokey and Scaredy Cat.