Chatham County Youth Commission Returns From Annual Tour

The students may have been sleepy eyed stepping off the bus, but members of the Chatham County Youth Commission said the past five days have been worth it. "It was a great trip. We saw a lot," said youth member Wesley Stone.

Stone is just one of the many students who traveled to Virginia, Philadelphia, Washington D.C. and New York, taking in a lot of sights.

The Chatham County Youth Commission was the only group in the country invited to attend the National Association of Counties annual Legislative Conference, where they learned how they can improve Chatham County.

However, what some say they will remember most is visiting the Capitol. "Going into the galley is not something a lot of people get to witness at our age," said Stone, "it's very important to see our government at work. Not only to see the galley while it's dormant, but to actually see the galley while the legislator is going on."

Georgia's First District Representative Jack Kingston even took the time to show the students around, but they couldn't stay too long because they had to head to their next stop: New York City, where the students had a chance to see ground zero.

Alderman Van Johnson said, "They actually didn't get it until the saw some of the artifacts from that day and heard the voices and met the people who actually served that day."

It's these real life experiences that are making the Chatham County Youth Commission stand out. "We're known all over the country for youth development and youth empowerment and we're making it happen right here in Chatham County. We should be very proud of our kids," said Johnson.

Reported by: Christy Hutchings,