Partners can help with snow removal

Crews from the Mesa County Partners Restitution Program recently cleared all the snow from the baseball field at Mesa State College so the team could practice. Looks like they’ll have to do it again after this most recent snowfall in Grand Junction.

This winter the kids have had plenty of work to do. Wickersham said the crews had been working nearly everyday removing snow for local residents, businesses and Mesa State College.

Twice a day, a crew of children and teens who owe community service hours because of petty crimes are sent, with supervision, into the community to shovel snow or do other chores.

“This program helps give kids a sense of pride and accountability,” said Trevor Wickersham, community restitution service coordinator for Partners, “It makes them think of somebody else instead of themselves.”

The kids offenses range from seat belt violations to assault or more serious criminal activity. But, most serving community service through the Partners program never commit another juvenile crime. “We have an 87 percent success rate, meaning these kids never come back,” Wickersham said.

Wickersham said the program relies heavily on the community to find work for the crews to do. In the winter, they remove snow. In the spring, they begin cleaning irrigation ditches, in the summer, they pick up trash and in the fall, there are leaves that need raking.

Last year, the kids served 26,000 hours of community service and gave back $92,000 in restitution to the community.

“We show them the effect their actions had on the community and show them what they can do to make up for it,” Wickersham said.

The program asks for a donation starting at $20 for snow removal. Anyone can take advantage of the service by calling 245-5555, ext. 19.


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