I have met very few young ladies like Cassidy Jones. She is genuine, funny and extremely determined. When she invited me to see her “project,” I had no idea what to expect. What I discovered was a young lady who had dedicated herself to a project that will positively impact the lives of hundreds of children, mothers and volunteers, for years to come.
Many of the kids who will be using this new kid-friendly space have never even had their own bed; many of them have been homeless. Imagine them now having a bright, beautiful, inviting children’s center to play in. What an incredible gift from Cassidy to Acres of Diamonds in Duvall.
I had the privilege of attending the ribbon cutting for this project, and I was truly amazed. Due to privacy issues, I had my tour at Acres of Diamonds, before the kids and moms arrived. I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of time and effort that went into creating this kid-friendly space. I can only imagine the faces of the kids and their moms when they walked in. I’m sure there were many tears. This was a secret project, and amazing gift, to the kids and mothers at Acres of Diamonds.
Cassidy Jones, 17, is a Patriot in Duvall’s American Heritage Girl Troop 317. She is currently working on her Stars and Stripes award which is the highest award given in the American Heritage Girls organization. This award requires the planning and implementation of a one-hundred-hour service project for the community. After speaking with Acres of Diamonds last spring, Cassidy chose to do her project with them.
The project that she chose to complete at Acres, was to turn the apartment that is used for the Kid’s Program, into a more kid-friendly, bright, fun and inviting space. The walls were painted, the apartment was organized and cleaned out, and spaces were created for specific age groups.
Many local businesses, people and volunteers contributed to the completion of this project and Cassidy is incredibly thankful for all of them. The businesses and organizations that joined her in this project include True Value, Hillside Academy, Adventure Community Church and Duvall’s AHG Troop 317. Additional contributions to the project include Xcelerate Driving School in Bothell, Cole Electric in Kirkland, Seattle Lighting in Bellevue, and a team of volunteers from Microsoft who came out for Acres’ Day of Caring.
Cassidy wants to thank all the amazing volunteers who gave their time to come and help her finish her project. She would also like to thank all the women who work at Acres of Diamonds, especially the Kids Program Director Sara Farrington and her mentor Christina McInnis, for helping her with the whole project and award process.
Cassidy is strong in her faith and knows that her faith allowed her to have this incredible opportunity to serve and work with the amazing people in this community.
I continue to be so impressed by the depth of this project. When I take a moment to think of the long-term impact, it warms my heart. There is a bright and colorful play area that includes a kitchen, a warm and cozy nursery, a cubby area where the kids can organize their things, a cool “hang out” room for teens and a bright and colorful, very organized library.
There are a few things that still need to be done that were beyond the scope of this project, including a bathroom remodel. The sink is too high for the little kids, the shower/tub is very old, it just really needs some TLC.
I started the Duvall Random Acts of Kindness organization 11 years ago and in all of that time, I have never seen an act of kindness as extensive as this. Her project needed to include 100 hours of service; I am confident that many more hours were given. Cassidy Jones really is a remarkable young lady!
For those who would like to see a video of this project, it can be seen it on the Duvall Random Acts of Kindness Facebook page or online at www.duvallrak.com.
Acres of Diamonds also has a list of needs on their Facebook page which includes a small fridge for the teen area.