HAMILTON, Ohio -- Fire hydrants in Hamilton are getting a helping hand from the community.
Students from the YMCA's summer work program are repainting and refreshing the city's fire hydrants. It's a necessary task that city officials said was improved with the help of public engagement.
Organizers said the students learn valuable life skills and serve as role models for others.
"Being very socially responsible with the kids as far as getting them used to learning some things that they need to have in the workforce as far as professional development," said Samy Broyles with the Booker T. Washington Community Center.
As many as 250 fire hydrants will be painted standard reflective yellow. And at least nine other hydrants in Hamilton's Lindenwald neighborhood will sport some artistic flare, thanks to another partnership with InsideOut Studio.
"It was twofold, that we are getting paid to help the city beautify and improve its appearance, but also giving a chance for our artists to get out and interact with the community," said Stephen Smith with InsideOut.
Those artists include adults with mental disabilities, but also plenty of creativity.
"I came up with the idea of flowers for my fire hydrant that I did," InsideOut student Jody Mann said.
City officials said the painting - both creative and standard - will continue through the beginning of August.
"I live here too, so I want to make where I live at look as nice as possible," volunteer Marquis Richardson said.