The Shine Project helps valley at-risk youths

It's described as a cause-driven Phoenix business that is changing the future of at-risk youth, but the kids who participate in the Shine Project call it a life saver.

- It's described as a cause-driven Phoenix business that is changing the future of at-risk youth, but the kids who participate in the Shine Project call it a life saver.

Hard work and self reliance are two very important life skills that Randall Rollins learns on the job.

"Back in 2012 when I was a graduating senior from high school, Ashley (Lemieux), she came to my school," he said. "I learned of the scholarship opportunity and jumped on it."

Rollins is among the first dozens of high school students who received a college scholarship through the Shine Project.

"I started a non-profit organization where we raised money to send first-generation college students to college in Phoenix," Shine Project founder Ashley Lemieux said.

Along with grants and other money difficult to come by, Lemieux opened a for-profit business soon after; a jewelry company. 

"We started a for-profit business where we take those kids and we give them jobs hand-making jewelry, so that they can learn business skill and keep earning money throughout their college experience," she said.

Now a senior studying bio-chemistry and theatre at UNLV, Randall Rollins will graduate in the spring of 2016. When he's home in the valley, Rollins works for book money and other spending cash.

"To be honest, as a senior from high school going into college, I really didn't see this for myself," he said. "All the help I've received along the way; it's been immense."

Since 2011, the Shine Project has given over 40 college scholarships to Phoenix inner-city youth.

To find out more or to purchase the jewelry, click here.


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