Founder & President:
Global Paint for Charity
Today I am thrilled to feature Mr. Rony Delgarde, founder and president of Global Paint for Charity! Mr. Delgarde's organization is nothing short of amazing, and his story and vision will truly inspire you. A Haitian immigrant, Mr. Delgarde could not believe all of the beautiful painted buildings he saw when he first arrived in the United States--he thought: "it's remarkably beautiful to see a city where all houses and tall buildings were painted with amazing colors. " He was inspired and committed to sharing the joy of color and paint with world, and started Global Paint for Charity in 2010. The organization works together with commercial businesses, residential households and other not-for-profit organizations in an effort to recycle, repackage, and distribute unwanted paint throughout the world. Currently, the organization serves 18 developing countries in the Caribbean, Central America, the Middle East and Africa! Mr. Delgarde is passionate about our youth and offers numerous volunteer opportunities, from allowing children in the Juvenile Court system to assist in painting communities and help at donation centers, to providing college students unique summer internships. He shares more details about his organization and how youth can get involved in this interview. Enjoy!
"We are very honored to offer activities to help youth learn from their mistakes and provide them with the skills and opportunities to do good and become successful citizens."
Q: Please share your experiences in working with children that are part of the Juvenile Court system. How does this process work?
It’s depending on the Juvenile Court system, the county and the requirement. We normally receive phone calls and emails from the parents or legal guardians of the juvenile offenders, stating the number of hours required to be completed with our organization. Global Paint works with Hands On Atlanta and Volunteer Match organizations, to manage our volunteer leads. We advise the parents to sign up on their website or complete an official volunteer form on our website. Our typical policy is that only the parents or legal guardians can drop off their children at our facility. And we ask the parents to bring the Juvenile Court Judge’s document stating the number of hours that must be completed with us. Our staff can sign any forms that the court or school requires.
In my experience, I have had the great opportunity to work with youth who needed only 40 hours and others needed 300 hours of community service. It is very important to discuss the goals and commitment with their parents for successful results. So we make sure the parents are engaged in the process. Every year, hundreds of young people are sent by the local Juvenile Court judges and High Schools throughout the Atlanta area to volunteer and work with The Global Paint for Charity or participate in our local paint projects where our staff oversees and evaluates their work. Through our community service programs, we have coached, mentored and trained them to behave and ultimately become better workers, students and leaders. In general, we are very honored to offer activities to help youth learn from their mistakes, and provide them with the skills and opportunities to do good and become successful citizens.
Q: You share that juvenile offenders have completed 2500 hours of community service—this is amazing! What types of projects do they work on?
Thank you. Every day many young people are inspired by the work they perform with our organization whether by volunteering to paint in our community or to work at our donation facility and storage. We have dozens of outdoor home painting projects throughout the city for residents that are physically and/or financially unable to paint the residence on their own. Also the youth help us to paint classrooms at public schools and parks in our communities.
At our facility, they learn to how sort and separate the paint by color and type, assemble and mix containers of paint by characteristics and labels. They then record the paint inventory in our daily log. They also assist with packaging and preparing the paint for shipping, usually in 5 gallon buckets. Our staff oversees and evaluates their work for efficiencies and safety measures.
Q: What type of work do your college interns perform?
Interns and volunteers are the lifeblood of our organization. Global Paint for Charity has always been an entirely volunteer-based project, and we could not have become successful without the hundreds of interns and volunteers who have put in thousands of hours to support our work. Many Interns and volunteers, including youth from various universities, including the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at GSU, Emory University and the University of Georgia, assist us in order to keep our operational costs very low. Many students have been with us for years and are now staff members, PR Coordinators, Grant Writers, Board Members and hold our Executive Assistant position.
We have had the great fortune to have many Interns from Universities in other States as well. Those students are usually looking for an internship within a reputable organization in the summer so they contact us. Most of the interns are passionate about our mission, they love paint and colors, and care about the environment and underserved population around the world. They are always excited to help the cause. Those who don’t have any relatives in Atlanta work remotely. We have a 4-hour/week or 12-hour/month minimum requirement, and all activities are matched to the credit requirements, skills and interests of our interns, from creating spreadsheets to managing data collected from our Paint Donors, Supporters, Recipients, Volunteers and new partners on our website to work in teams or committees that focus on addressing the various needs and strategies of our organization.
Catherine Zhang is a rising sophomore at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, studying Journalism and Integrated Marketing Communications and a minor in Business Institutions. Last summer, she interned with Global Paint for Charity, at our Headquarters in Atlanta Georgia, gaining marketing and social media experience. Catherine wrote a great summary post of her experience working with us ! Click on this link SIGP Views from the Cube: Global Paint for Charity.
Q: What advice do you have for parents?
The most important piece of advice I have for parents has to do with their responsibilities as parents to provide their children with the opportunity to develop positive behaviors. Also, teaching their children to be obedient is one of the most fundamental efforts to prevent them from committing crimes and violence. Even though your children may not always do what you ask of them to do, they'll always remember how to behave and do what is appropriate most of the time.
Q: If parents want to get their kids involved in your program, what do they need to do?
They can complete the volunteer form on our website at www.globalpaints.org/volunteer.php. The volunteers must be sensitive and passionate about helping others, especially those who are living in urban communities with limited resources. Also, they must have an understanding of The Global Paint for Charity’s mission, process and core values. Volunteers must sign a Waiver of Liability form and agree to comply with all Global Paint obligations. Most of our internal activities may involve some light warehouse activities including lifting and opening 5 gallon buckets and containers of paint, volunteers must be 16 years or older and are not pregnant to be eligible. Those who volunteer to do outside projects must fulfill specific requirements.
For more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll free 855-853-7772. You can get in touch with Mr. Delgarde by email--click here.
Kathryn Boortz has a passion for working with youth and their families. She is the founder of Boortz Law, a law firm that focuses on juvenile defense.