Leadership Class Projects Benefit the Youth of Our Community

Leadership Class Projects Benefit the Youth of Our Community

Leadership McPherson is a professional development program of the McPherson Chamber of Commerce. It was created in 1981 and restructured in 2000 with a new curriculum, and a commitment to initiate a project to benefit the youth in our area.  Since 2000 the incredible class projects have touched many lives and continue to serve important needs.  Check out this summarized version of the impactful Leadership McPherson Class projects.

2000-2003 If anyone has information on the youth projects from these years, we would love to hear about them!

2004– McPherson County Big Brothers/Big Sisters were the beneficiary of the 2004 class collaboration. Class organized and sponsored a swim party and picnic for 92 “bigs” and “littles.”

2005– Created the Family Fair to connect community organization and resources and to stress the importance of the 40 Developmental Assets. The BASIC Committee of the Chamber continued to organize the Family Fair until 2016.

2006– Painted the basement area of the Mt. Hope Sanctuary for the children who live there.

2007– (BLAM- Beyond Learning At the Middle School) Organized events after school at the middle school, students also attended a play at McPherson College and then the Leadership Class followed up with a celebration at the McPherson Water Park for all middle school students.

2008– no class

2009– Summer Food Program Learned about a backpack program started by a mother at a local grade school to provide food on weekends for kids with food insecurities. Leadership Class wanted to grow the backpack program to serve all schools in McPherson. They researched ways to fund the project, facilities to store the food items, how to confidentially get the food to the students, volunteers, and the logistics of it all. Meanwhile the Class learned about the Food-4-Kids Program provided by the Kansas Food Bank and facilitated the connection to get USD #418 on board so that hundreds of kids would receive weekend back packs of food. This led to the realization that these children also needed assistance during the summer which prompted the United Way and McPherson County Community Foundation to initiate the Summer Lunch Program with the volunteer base of the 2009 Leadership Class, who delivered sacks of groceries weekly during the summer.

2010-Purchased a GPS and taught middle school students how to use them for geocaching =treasure hunting! Encouraged outdoor family time. The GPS was kept at the K-State Research and Extension Office and loaned out to families.

2011– Recycling project. Received a grant from Coca Cola and a large recycling container to put at the school for recycling pop bottles and water bottles. The class paraded the giant Coca Cola Recycling Bottle down Main during the ASD parade.

2012– Collected funds and items to create Care Packs for children that were displaced temporarily when being removed from their home. Care Packs were distributed at the law enforcement center and included items such as toothbrush, coloring books, stuffed animals, and comfort items.

2013– Received a grant to purchase a child identification program (CHIPS) to assist law enforcement find and identify missing children. The class also painted and decorated the Heart to Heart office space to make it more kid friendly.

2014– no Class

2015– Provided over 25 bicycles to children who needing them to get to the reformatted Summer Lunch Program which started serving meals at two local schools, instead of delivering sacks of groceries to their homes.

2016– Created the Bullpup Exchange at MHS. It is a clothes and hygiene closet located right inside MHS, where students have convenient access to all items for FREE! Students are encouraged to drop of donations, as well as “shop” and pick up anything they may need or want. Partnered with a MHS teacher who oversees the clothes closet with student volunteers.

2017– Bridge the Gap- Delivered weekly food to students K-12 for the three weeks between the end of the summer lunch program, and start of school meals. Class worked in conjunction with USD 418 and MCCF.

2018– no class

2019-The Class lead the activities on the first day of the STUCO Summer Leadership Camp (program by USD 418 STUCO and sponsors Keri Moddelmog and Coach Kurt Kinnamon.) The camp was designed to teach teamwork, leadership skills, and positive life habits to students that would be going into 3rd-6th grade.

2020– School Supply Closet at MMS- Conversations evolved and the Class narrowed their focus to provide school supplies for McPherson Middle School students. After fundraising, collaboration, and purchasing items, a School Supply Closet will be designated at MMS and filled-up. It will be available for teachers and counselors to provide items to students throughout the school year.

What will the 2021 Leadership McPherson Class decide on?