Youth Leadership Texas, founded in 2004, has had a fourteen-year history of service to the community. We have diligently provided services in the line of food, clothing, and fun events that promote physical activity for children who are either underprivileged or considered at-risk. We have prided ourselves in successfully conducting food drives where we request specific food items designed to fit and meet the needs of the projects we are working on. For instance, we held a 3-day food drive our first year and collected enough snack foods to provide 200 children who were being housed in the Star of Hope Women and Family Shelter in downtown Houston with a snack bag every Sunday in the month of September.

    We recognized the need for assistance because children generally get hungry after dinner and in the shelter, they eat early on Sundays which leaves Sunday nights foodless until the next morning when the children go to school. Our snack bags filled the need for evening snacks for those children. We have held Christmas parties several years where several companies sponsored us each year and provided us with enough toys for the children in attendance to receive a gift. We serviced 135 children our first year and we had enough toys left over to go out to a daycare center and drop off for the owner to hand to children they knew were in need.

    Our efforts have not only been on children, but on the community as a whole. We held a cleanup project three years ago where 25 of us walked down West Orem at Hiram Clarke Road and picked up all of the trash on the street and the median between Almeda Road and South Post Oak Blvd. The neighborhood CITGO station owner treated us to homemade cheeseburgers and fries with drinks and water included! We are hopeful this year to continue our efforts with many useful and successful projects and are hopeful that many more will join in to either volunteer or to support our efforts. We feel that providing services to the community not only helps the community as a whole, but it also helps those who are volunteers within the organization.