Skip to main content

Student volunteers help clean up the North Hill neighborhood

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) — This summer, students are volunteering their time and energy to visit and help other communities for what they call a “Week of Hope.”

The mission trip organization Group Cares has nearly 2,700 students participating in volunteer work this year. They come from all over the country to new places and get to know the locals, working on any projects that require labor.

In North Charleston, these volunteers spend a few days cleaning up land owned by Liberty Hill Redevelopment Group to help the community maximize the use of their land.

Elijah Shreffler, a 14-year-old volunteer, says he wanted to give back to a new community and meet new people.

“It’s very inspiring because after all that hard work and progress, you realize what you can do with just a few people and a little time,” Shreffler says.

Micah Braznell, 12, says his youth group was singing and he felt he needed to be part of something bigger than himself.

“The guys we were helping were stunned that we could do all of this in such a short time,” Braznell said.

Craig Mitchell of the Liberty Hill Redevelopment Group called the volunteers “worker bees”, saying he had never seen such enthusiastic and hardworking people. Now he calls them his friends and hopes they can keep in touch to keep up with developments in the neighborhood.

“We’ve met some new friends over the past few days and we’ll make sure we keep the relationship going and maybe one day we can go to their neighborhoods and help them because it’s our turn today and maybe tomorrow it will be theirs,” Mitchell said.

18-year-old Austin Vansparrentak says it’s been a fun experience working in the garden and solving problems knowing they’re meeting community goals.

“Someone walked past us and they asked what we were doing and we told them and they were so grateful for everything we were helping. That means a lot, especially with the history of this neighborhood in the state. “said Vansparrentak.

Members of the Liberty Hill Redevelopment Group say they are grateful to the group for coming to Charleston and look forward to working with Group Cares again to improve more communities in Charleston and across the country.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.