Paint, supplies are needed as teens head to Oklahoma City for neighborhood revitalization project

Neighborhood Alliance and Rebuilding Together OKC are collecting paint to give an Oklahoma City neighborhood a facelift with help from Catholic Heart Work Camp.
BY JONATHAN SUTTON jsutton@opubco.com Modified: May 17, 2013 at 10:36 am •  Published: May 16, 2013

Volunteer organizations in Oklahoma City plan to use donated paint — new, old and every color — to revitalize a neighborhood.

Catholic Heart Work Camp is a nationwide organization that sends teen volunteers across the country for a week to participate in community improvement projects.

Campers come to Oklahoma City every year, and this year they are partnered with the Neighborhood Alliance and Rebuilding Together OKC for the project.

The organizations plan to spend a week in June painting and repairing 40 homes in the Culbertson East Highland neighborhood, which was selected through Oklahoma City's Strong Neighborhoods Initiative.

Neighborhood Alliance has been collecting paint since April, and Ashley Dickson, who works with the alliance, said they are up to about 40 gallons.

Dickson said more than 100 gallons is needed, and the Oklahoma City Hazardous Waste department has pledged to donate a 55-gallon drum.

Once the desired amount of paint is attained, Dickson said, all the cans are mixed together in large drums, and the color usually turns out to be tan or brown.

She said she's confident enough paint will be donated, but other supplies also are needed for the project.

Dickson said they are looking for businesses and citizens to donate water and snacks for the 300 teenage volunteers from Catholic Heart Work Camp.

Mary Smith, Catholic Heart Work Camp manager for Oklahoma City, said the teens, ages 14-18, will arrive in Oklahoma on June 23 from Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The campers will stay at Bishop McGuiness High School and will volunteer at the area food bank and area Boys and Girls Club programs, along with helping in neighborhoods.

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