PHOENIX – A Phoenix youth center has recovered most of its recreational equipment that was stolen last week.
Dan Brodeur with The Refuge Youth Center said someone with a U-Haul truck cut through padlocks and chains to steal a trailer full of rafts, surfboards, tents, grills and kayaks Thursday night.
Brodeur said one of the center's kids spotted the trailer parked in his neighborhood Monday night and almost all of the gear was still in it.
"We lost three or four tents and a grill and that's it," Brodeur said.
The Refuge is a center that allows teens to do good deeds and be charitable members of the community. In exchange for their acts of kindness, they get to go on adventure trips using the equipment stored in the trailer.
"We try to create opportunities with that stuff so that the kids can get, not only new experiences, but kind of challenge them in areas that they're trying to grow," Brodeur said. "So to have all this stuff back is a huge blessing for us."
Most of the items belonged to volunteers and were loaned to the faith-based center located near Deer Valley Road and Seventh Avenue.
"To steal from kids is bad, to steal from people who are giving to kids seems almost worse," Brodeur said.
Brodeur said he's thankful to everyone who offered to help replace the stolen items and he has some advice for the thief or thieves.
"Don't steal … find another way to make an income," he said. "Figure out how to get things and to work for that stuff. Don't take it from people who have worked for it, or in this case, worked for it and then given it in a good manner."
Recreational equipment stolen from N. Phoenix youth center