CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The thousands of Boy Scouts volunteering in community service projects during the 2013 National Boy Scout Jamboree are getting a helping hand from local business and nonprofit volunteers.
To bolster community service during the event, the Boy Scouts have partnered with the Citizens Conservation Corps of West Virginia to create the Reaching the Summit Community Service Initiative, the largest community service project of its kind in U.S. history.
Over a five-day period during the Jamboree, 40,000 Boy Scouts will team with local volunteers to perform 300,000 hours of community service through more than 350 projects spanning a nine-county area in southern West Virginia.
Some local businesses have stepped up as well.
Members from the Charleston and Beckley Sherwin-Williams stores will work with Scout groups over the next few days to help them complete some of their projects.
Sherwin-Williams has pledged more than $10,000 worth of products and in-kind contributions.
"It is a large sum of money, but at the same time what you're giving back to the community, it's kind of priceless," said Brandon Bates, a sales representative at Sherwin-Williams' Beckley location.
Bill Baur manages the Charleston-area district for the company, which includes portions of West Virginia, eastern Ohio and northeastern Kentucky.
Baur said many of the company's employees grew up in the Boy Scouts. He is also a Scout Leader in his son's troop.
He said the company approached the Scouts to offer help because employees understood the effect community service projects during the Jamboree have with the kids.
"When you look at these boys . . . they get very excited," Baur said. "It will teach them to do these things when they go forward in life and whatever they end up doing, to give back."
The main project getting help from company officials is a fence-painting project at the School of Harmony in Beaver.