Last November, three Oak Park and River Forest High School teenagers started a small lawn care business. Around the same time, Tim Smyth invited a group of young people associated with the Austin-based nonprofit, Westside Health Authority, to clean his yard as a way to put them to work.
Since then, Smythe has teamed up with the teenagers and Anthony Clark of Suburban Unity Alliance to form the Neighbors United LLC, a "landscaping, lawn care and maintenance business that employs at-risk young adults in the Oak Park and Austin communities," according to a joint statement by Smythe and Clark.
The two Oak Park residents said they joined forces after realizing that, if they combined their resources, they could create a "sustainable business that provides year-round employment for young adults looking for opportunity."
Through community donations and the sponsorship of Byline Bank, Neighbors United purchased a pickup truck for the growing business and have employed over 10 young adults who provide a range of services, including lawn care, moving, painting and furniture assembly.
Anyone interested in hiring Neighbors United LLC can email: firstname.lastname@example.org for a quote.
Answer Book 2017
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