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United Way Young Leaders spread back-to-school cheer at Chalk the Walk

ABILENE, Texas - Some elementary students will get a surprise when they head back to school tomorrow.

The United Way Young Leaders Society wrote inspirational messages on sidewalks with chalk. Four elementary schools were chosen, including Taylor Elementary.

"It's really fun for United Way to get together with our young leaders group and work on a project to welcome kids back to school, kind of get them inspired coming back here in January, said Bethany Ashlock, the organization's community impact and marketing director.

Karyme Melendez, a 5th grader at Austin Elementary, wanted to make sure other kids feel encouraged when they come back to school.

"I kind of like giving inspiration to kids and it is fun to play with chalk and know that you're helping kids get through their school day," Melendez said.

One of the many quotes she wrote down said: "I can and I will. Watch me."

Melendez explained, "So they know they can shine a little brighter than everyone else and hopefully that they find their voice and stand out."

The United Way hopes these messages will make coming back to school a little more enjoyable. This is the first time Chalk the Walk was put together. The United Way is curious about what the students will think walking into class.

"I hope this gives the elementary kids something to be excited about on the first day back," Ashlock said.


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