The hustle and bustle of Charleston—West Virginia’s capital city—stands in contrast to other more rural towns nestled in the Appalachian Mountains. Charleston is the main corporate center of the state, but many people are also connected to the coal mines and are still greatly influenced by the coal culture of rural West Virginia. The city of Charleston is relatively diverse compared to the rest of West Virginia, making it a unique place within the state to experience the challenges and joys of bringing together people from different backgrounds. While the city itself has a more urban feel, the kindness and hospitality of the “locals” remind visitors that the true beauty of the community is in the rich natural resources and relaxed pace of life that characterizes all of West Virginia.
Serving in Charleston
- Partner with local organizations to meet ongoing needs in the community.
- During the week, students may serve all or part of the week at a food shelf, clothing distribution center, soup kitchen, children’s program, or elderly care.
- Plan and facilitate sports-based programming for community youth.
- Most students will serve at each service site during part of the week. Those who serve with the sports program will remain all week.
During a week in Charleston, you and your youth will have the opportunity to learn firsthand about the people, history and culture of this city. Serve and build relationships with a variety of people in Charleston through the Boys and Girls Club, Union Mission, Covenant House and local senior centers. You may also get to spend time with local children at Outrageous Sports Camp. During the evenings worship with a local congregation and feast with friends old and new at a community potluck — which always includes a nearly famous homemade cobbler!
YouthWorks has been serving in Charleston since 2003, and we have partnered with many of our service partners consistently since then. They eagerly await the arrival of YouthWorks staff and participants each summer. Our host church goes out of their way to welcome and embrace YouthWorks groups, and to share the culture of Charleston with them.