Peoria, Ill -- Directors at Bradley University say one of the school's core values is service to the surrounding community.
Our Paul Strater took a look at one Bradley program.. that lets students reach out out to the youngest members of the area's homeless population.
This group of children all have one thing in common. They're all homeless. And they get to spend one Saturday a month with a group of Bradley university students who are giving back to the community.
Kids think being homeless means that, not having anything or not having anybody to care or take time out with them. And this is showing them that there is someone out there who is willing to interact with them and give them a chance, you know, so they can be themselves. They can enjoy themselves. They can showcase their talents," said Kimberly Johnson, a YWCA Site Manager
The program is called "Service on Saturday". It pairs students who feel a calling to serve the community with agencies that need their help. Sophomore Caitlyn Mayhorn is a SERVE coordinator.
"I just really enjoy it. It's fun to get out into Peoria, and just learn about different places and different people, and be able to help. Like, I enjoy that," said Mayhorn. And the fact that Service on Saturday can help coordinate things like that, I enjoy being a part of that as well. Just making sure other students can get out and volunteer too if they want to."
The group from Bradley University gathers here once a month to interact and play gamed with the children whoa re staying here at the homeless shelter. It's something both the college students, and the children, very much look froward to.
Nine year old Nicolas Necula lives at the shelter with his parents and sister.
"I want to play with the Bradley students. It's really awesome. I play games, I do fun activities," said Nicolas.
Activities that help enrich the lives of some of our most vulnerable neighbors.