CHERAW - Members of the Community Roundtable held their monthly meeting June 17 at Robert Smalls Building.
The Roundtable was originally established as a co-op with the Cheraw Chamber of Commerce and the Chesterfield County Chapter of the NAACP to help make the community a better place for everyone, especially our youth.
"The original idea of organizing the Community Roundtable was to bring together two strong forces to help better our youth and the community as well," said Maggie Merriman, chairperson for the Community Roundtable.
"Having things for our young people to do that is constructive and will teach them how to accomplish things of importance is one aspect of the roundtable. The goals of the Community Roundtable are many for the entire Cheraw community and Chesterfield County".
Looking at the whole picture, focusing on the needs of our youth, and what challenges they face today are just a few examples of some of the concerns the members have.
Catherine Thompson of the Onestop Workforce Center in Cheraw said, " Our youth need to learn the skills necessary in order to be efficient in today's workforce as they grow up."
Lisa Bailey, Department of Juvenile Justice, also mentioned that some of the youth she works with want to have a "free day" at the park. "This will give them an opportunity to communicate with each other and hopefully will draw more interest from other youth,"
One other topic of discussion was the food shortage at various distributions centers for needy families. Merriman suggested having a community garden would be one way to help offset the food shortage.
"Because of a limited budget, we seem to be running out of funds faster than ever before," said Samuel Bass, executive director of EOC. "It comes form times of hardship and it will take a lot of organization and work to get people to help do a garden in this hot weather."
According to roundtable members, the bottom line is that the Cheraw Community Roundtable is here to help the community.
An Educational meeting was held last Thursday at the Robert Smalls Building for anyone who is interested in education. The purpose of this meeting was to gather information and to discuss scholarships as well as putting together a plan of action for the 2008-2009 Chesterfield County School District. Topics such as recruitment, retention of teachers and the local drop out rate will be on the agenda.
Efforts are continuing to get more people involved with the Community.
"We want people to come out and be interested in what we are trying to accomplish within the community," said Merriman. "That is why we are here."
Thompson stated, "There is more to just meeting and planning, we must put into action what we discuss to make the plan work."
The next Cheraw Community Roundtable meeting will be held July 15 at 5:30 p.m. at Robert Smalls Building.