One Alcorn State University alumnus and Vicksburg, Mississippi native is making a difference by coordinating initiatives that require youth to be cheerful givers.
Terry Sadler, principal probation officer with the Dekalb County Juvenile Court, helped the youth offenders collect 3.5 tons worth of canned goods for the DeKalb Food Drive from Jan. 23 to Feb. 17 as part of their community service. The food was dispersed between different entities in the county.
“The initiative was a county wide effort due to depleted food pantries need during the holidays,” said Sadler, who earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Alcorn in 2000. “As an incentive to the youth, they were able to earn community service hours.”
Seeing the youths’ enthusiasm was the highlight of the food drive. He expressed pride in the students for being generous to the less fortunate.
“It felt great. The youth were required to bring in at least 35 canned goods that earned them five community service hours. To be quite frank, those students who donated actually may have helped a fellow peer without knowing it. Several youth services will benefit from the food drive.”
Sadler said that the food drive was very beneficial in opening the youths’ eyes to those who struggle to make ends meet.
“It benefited the youth by helping them understand the importance of giving back to their community when they have committed an offense. Not only that, someone they know, whether directly or indirectly, will not have to go to bed hungry. It may have been a friend, family member or someone from school who will benefit from the food drive.”