Hundreds of students from Bethel's School of Supernatural Ministry (BSSM) spent Friday morning helping beautify different parts of Redding.
It’s called the City Project, and it started about seven years ago.
It's a collaboration between BSSM and the City of Redding parks department.
“We have all these students that are living here and some of them just for a year or two,” group leader Rachelle Price said. “But we wanted to serve the city in a way that they would feel served. And so that's our heart is just to serve the city and that's why we're under the leadership of the parks.”
Every Friday during the semester, students help perform care and upkeep on parks and other city properties identified by the parks service.
“We have a lot of parks,” City of Redding gardener Jim Cole said. “So to be able to come in with a group of 50 or 60 people like this and get work done the way it's getting done today in pretty much four hours. It's really neat to leave out of here in four hours with it completely changed.”
Friday morning, students helped with basic cleanup like pruning, pulling weeds, hedging and spreading mulch at the Redding Area Bus Authority, the library, South City Park and other locations.
The program is part of BSSM’s community service requirement for students.
“Well, I've always volunteered my time on Fridays since going through school,” volunteer Joshua Carmel said. “I grew up in a farming town, and so this is just a way to give back.”
Price said many students are only here for a short time, but this is a great way to give back to the community while they're here.
“A lot of them come back to volunteer year after year, even after they graduate,” she said. “And so it seems to me that they're happy and invested in their city and thankful to be a part of it.”