Brownieland July Guest Blog Spotlights Volunteer Opportunites with Pebble Tossers

Pebble Tossers is a youth development nonprofit with a mission to empower and equip youth to lead through service. Over the years, the Brownieland Team has enjoyed volunteering with Pebble Tossers for a variety of projects like the National Family Volunteer Day BeltLine Beautification Project, Kid’s Recycle Day in honor of Earth Month, and the Virtual Volunteer Project with the Atlanta Community ToolBank. We admire how Pebble Tossers inspires youth and family volunteerism by providing monthly community-wide service projects each year. Currently serving in 10 counties across greater Atlanta, Pebble Tossers brings together volunteers from all walks of life, creating a ripple of giving!

Learn more about what this remarkable organization has been up to lately in our July Guest Blog by Pebble Tosser’s Olivia Bornkessel.

Pebble Tossers highlights one of our 12 cause areas each month in order to bring awareness to a variety of needs that are often overlooked. For the summer of 2021, our cause areas include Arts + Culture, Global Awareness, and Education + Literacy. 

June’s cause area is Arts + Culture. More than ever, children and young adults are developing anxiety about said future without an avenue to relieve stress. Arts + Culture have been proven to have a positive effect not only on mental health but school achievement. Students who experience their own culture but the cultures present in their community gain a better understanding of what it means to be human. Culture is essential to self-worth and confidence during the most impressionable years of growth. Pebble Tossers acknowledges the diverse population of the greater Atlanta area and is proud to serve its communities. This included volunteering as a junior counselor for the Spruill Arts Center art camp. Volunteers assisted instructors to enhance the experience for their campers. Pebble Tossers also created art kits from home for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Throughout the years, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta (CHOA) has relied on families, individuals, and groups for a variety of donations for their patients and families. Since volunteers can’t visit in person to host activities for the families, they are accepting Art Kits that you can create from home. The Art Kits help the patients briefly escape their situation by allowing them to focus on creative and fun activities.

July’s cause area is Global Awareness. Now that the world is slowly emerging from the global pandemic, it is more important to implement positive changes to prevent history from repeating itself. A common buzz phrase used by many environmentalists and humanitarians is, “act locally, think globally.” But what does this look like from a more concrete perspective? Millions of lives are devastated every year by disasters on both a local and global scale. Without the selflessness and courage of those willing to help, even more, lives would be lost. Pebble Tossers worked and continues to work with organizations like HOPE Atlanta and Open Hand Atlanta to deliver meals, load vehicles, and other necessary tasks to ease the workload due to increasing demand for meals. In order to think globally, it is important to start small and work within your community to enact change. In addition to this, Books For Africa (BFA) collects, sorts, and ships books, computers, tablets, and library enhancement materials to every country in Africa. Pebble Tossers volunteers worked with BFA during the month of July to sort and pack books.

One of the main service events for July is for the Refugee Resettlement Program of Catholic Charities Atlanta. According to Refugees International, more than 80 million people worldwide have been displaced by conflict, human rights abuses, and persecution, and many millions more are displaced each year by climate-related disasters. Catholic Charities Atlanta (CAA) provides Refugee Services to refugee families arriving in the metro Atlanta area. The extensive resettlement services are designed to help refugees achieve economic and social self-sufficiency within their first six months in the United States. Pebble Tossers hosted a Painting Furniture & Fix-It Day with CAA on July 21. Our teens repaired and painted furniture, put together boxes with sets of dishes, assembled back-to-school backpacks, and prepared food boxes to be delivered to refugees. They also performed simple but crucial furniture repairs.

August’s cause area is Education + Literacy. Education is the backbone of any thriving community as it is the gift that keeps on giving. Many schools have limited access to the internet and diverse libraries, which greatly affects the quality of learning. When children are given the opportunity to flourish in school, they are then equipped to educate their community and loved ones, creating a beautiful chain of knowledge. Youth deserve to learn without impediments such as lack of resources and technology; all children should have equal access to high-quality education. For years past and to come, Pebble Tossers supports the education system of the greater Atlanta area in a number of ways. This includes Pebble Tossers’ Book Nook program, which provides mini-libraries in four homeless shelters in Atlanta. The Book Nooks allow children to access new books on a monthly basis as we restock the books during Activity Nights. In addition, Pebble Tossers assisted Dresden Elementary School Back to School Supplies Drive this month and helped the staff organize books and other supplies so that the teachers could focus their efforts on preparing their classrooms for students. School supplies are an ongoing need, so throughout the month of August, Pebble Tossers encourages individual donations brought to schools in need. 

Providing awareness of these cause areas benefits Pebble Tossers’ volunteers and helps them learn about the needs of our community, and provides the opportunities and resources to take action and make a difference. For more information on how to get involved with age-appropriate service in the greater Atlanta area, please visit www.pebbletossers.org

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