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HYPE enhances future of Effingham County youths
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HYPE rewards students for academic success. - photo by Submitted

GUYTON — The vision of HYPE (Helping Young People Excel) Outreach Ministries is to keep children focused on productive things.
HYPE workers and volunteers are dedicated to enlightening youths about the consequences that can result from mischief at an early age.
"We work with kids on basic life skills," said Roy Griffin Jr., a HYPE activist. "We do different activities that involve making them think critically and following directions. They learn what happens when you don't follow directions."
Griffin said HYPE participants often don't have father figures in their lives.
"They might have relationships with their fathers but it might not be the best, so we try to be there to support the kids through things like sports and spending additional time with them doing things like fishing," he explained.
HYPE focuses on academics, too.
"We've been pushing them about improving in the classroom and knowing how to be vocal when they need help," Griffin said. "We teach them to take advantage of resources we already have available so as tutoring and things like that at the schools."
HYPE rewards classroom success by taking students on excursions to Frames and Games or similar activities.
"We rewarded those with an 80 average during the first nine weeks of school," Griffin said. "Then we upped it to 85 to really challenge them. A lot of it is about willpower."
Students are encouraged to evaluate themselves in regard to how much time they spend studying compared to pursuing frivolous objectives.
HYPE also teaches children financial concepts.
I'd like them to start thinking about how to save a manage money," Griffin said. "I'm trying to get a friend of mine who is in accounting to come talk to them so they can get their own little bank account and start focusing on that area, especially migh high schoolers as they prepare to go to college and enter into careers.
"They need to prepare for that next step."
Griffin said HYPE, which meets each Monday (boys) and Wednesday (girls) at 6 p.m. at 501 Dilmus Jackson Drive in Guyton, has a positive relationship with local schools.
"Every now and then, I get an email from a school liason who thinks our program might be of assistance to a child," he said. "We work with several young men who have been referred by the high schools and some middle schools.
"It's been a good process."
The process includes volunteerism. Students are encouraged to work for food pantries or visit nursing homes. In addition, students who graduate from HYPE occasionally return to the organization to serve as mentors.
"We're trying to help improve our community," Griffin said. "These children are our future and if we invest in them they will eventually invest in the community and we will all have a better state.
"We've got to equip them with the knowledge to be able to carry the torch as we get older."
To learn more about HYPE, email Griffin at

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the 11th story in a weekly series about organizations in Effingham County Family Connection, part of a statewide initiative that cultivates public and private collaboration at the local level. Georgia Family Connection is represented in each of the state’s 159 counties, making it the largest network of its kind in the nation. The Effingham County Board of Commissioners is the local affiliate’s fiscal agent.