On Wednesday, the Association of Fundraising Professionals put on their annual Youth in Philanthropy Program for the Junior Leadership Orange youth. The youth in Junior Leadership Orange are 30 eighth grade students from public and private schools who live in Orange County who demonstrate leadership skills amongst their peers. The Youth in Philanthropy Program’s goal is to reach out to young people to share and inspire stories to encourage youth involvement. This year they invited two students from Cornwall High School and Andrew Crinieri from Our Lady of Lourdes to speak about their experiences volunteering and giving back to their communities. 

Andrew spoke about how he started volunteering for Families 4 Families when he was in sixth grade. Families 4 Families is a program that brings donated items to families in need. They bring Christmas presents and food on Christmas Eve, food and Easter baskets for Easter and school supplies before school starts. Up until this point, when his family would ask him if he wanted to help out, he would make up excuses to stay home. But the year he began helping he started because they brought donuts to where they were organizing the donated items for families for Christmas. Once he got there and started helping he was hooked. He loves to see the joy the families have when they receive their items. This encouraged him to also want to help out with Habitat for Humanity once he began high school.