in THE NEWS
Jennifer Pierce | January 28, 2019
Meet Jeffrey Silerio, CARP Las Vegas Alumni! He joined CARP in Las Vegas in August of 2014 (when it started!) until he graduated from University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) in December of 2015.
Before CARP, Jeffrey was approached by Satoshi Inoue, a volunteer from Japan, about Shine City Project. Shine City Project (SCP) is a service organization in Las Vegas aimed at cleaning up Las Vegas and inspiring the community to live for the sake of others. Shine City hopes to change the culture in Las Vegas to be about serving.
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The Fill | February 29, 2016
Every weekend, a group of dedicated young people work to polish up Las Vegas’s image, both literally and figuratively. For the past three years, Shine City has brought together students from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) every Friday and Saturday morning to tackle a community cleanup project. The sites range from parks, to vacant lots, to littered stretches of sidewalk. While cleaning up trash and weeds is the primary work carried out by Shine City volunteers, the organization’s core goal is to foster a greater sense of community ownership.
The inspiration for Shine City, according to the organization’s president, John Everett, was to reverse the view of Las Vegas as “Sin City,” a place where no one feels inspired to do good for their neighbors. “Las Vegas is a very transient city. Nobody thinks of it as a permanent place.” This disconnected attitude is what Shine City works to change. “We not only improve the community through cleanups, but feel closer to it.”
Family Federation | December 2, 2014
Shine City Project was started on March 16, 2013 by the Las Vegas Family Church. True Father inspired the idea for Shine City Project. He wanted to turn Las Vegas from being Sin City to Shine City. The group organizes city cleanups, the first of which was held at the Bonanza Gift Shop which is popularly known as the World’s Largest Gift Shop and is located just north of the Las Vegas strip near Las Vegas Boulevard and Sahara. With Shine City Project efforts, the area has been kept fairly clean and has inspired others to take greater responsibility of the communities that they live in.
In April 2013, Shine City Project began to expand to members outside of the Las Vegas Family Church. By going to the University of Las Vegas (UNLV) campus and handing out flyers, the organization began to attract a number of UNLV students. Continuing into the summer months of 2013, the organization ambitiously held cleanups every Friday and Saturday morning despite the hot weather.
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Family Federation | September 17, 2014
Recently CARP was featured in the UNLV student paper The Rebel Yell for its work with Shine City, another organization committed to improving Las Vegas. The service project focused on cleaning up the Mount Charleston community, about 40 minutes outside Las Vegas, but Akira Watanabe, who was interviewed by the paper, stressed, “Cleaning the city is one thing, but we need to clean our hearts as well.” The article applauded CARP and Shine City not only for their efforts to physically clean the city but also for their desire to create leaders with a strong desire and heart to help others.
The CARP team now has a comfortable place within the university, but hopes to do more work in the community as well. “We also want to get leverage from our service projects to raise our visibility locally and grow our impact,” said a local CARP member, as quoted in a recent report about the program.
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Stephanie Castille | September 10, 2014
Jeffrey Silerio and Akira Watanabe are on an unusual mission to shake the sin out of Sin City.
Together, the dynamic duo plans to sprinkle Las Vegas with model leaders by inspiring UNLV students to reach their potential, care for one another and clean up trash throughout the Valley.
Silerio, a native Las Vegan, is president of the Shine City Project. Watanabe is the leader of The Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles (CARP), an up-and-coming organization on campus.
They believe that reducing the city’s waste and encouraging selflessness will discourage typical “sins” that Las Vegas is known for like booze, drugs and prostitution.
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Rev. Ken Doo | April 13, 2014
UNLV Festival of Communities was a great way for the public to approach the many people that make up the Shine City Project.
The members of the Shine City project made good impressions through games and introduced a clear image of their goals to the participants. From young children to elderly people, the participants were able to experience the member's determinism for a cleaner and more beautiful Las Vegas.
This was a great success, and hopefully taught people more about our wonderful volunteer team and influenced them to work alongside our missionaries to change this "sin city" into a shining city.
Krista Moon | April 14, 2013
On the morning of Friday April 14, 2013, Unificationists gathered north of the Las Vegas Strip to clean the streets as part of the new outreach and service effort dubbed, the “Shine City Project.”
“The name of 'Shine City' is based on True Father’s prophecy to make Las Vegas a shining city,” Pastor Demian Dunkley, the leader of the Las Vegas congregation, told Unification News in an interview. “The Shine City project is simple in that we basically clean the streets in the areas, such as north of the Strip, where visitors leave behind their refuse and garbage on the streets. After joining in service with new guests we invite them to one of our evening programs or lectures. It is a good way of meeting good natured people, and it is a great way for the missionaries to develop relationships with students.”
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