Day of caring set for Sept. 9

September 03, 1997


Staff Writer, Charles Town

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Jefferson County volunteers will paint the Shenandoah Women's Center, work on home repairs for elderly and disabled residents, and build a new closet for the local Girl Scouts' office on Sept. 9.

About 600 residents have signed up and more volunteers are needed for the second annual Day of Caring in Jefferson County. The United Way event is also taking place in Berkeley and Morgan counties.

United Way agencies were asked to come up with a "wish list" of projects, said Jefferson County United Way Executive Director Marie Beirne.


Last year, agencies sent in requests that were too narrow in scope.

In one case, the agency had asked for some yard work. While doing it, the volunteers decided using mulch would be a good idea, so Day of Caring Co-Chair Teresa McCabe scrambled to find a nursery willing to donate some.

Later, the volunteers called and said they wanted to plant mums as well, so McCabe said she found another nursery willing to donate the flowers.

Participants are either individuals who take the day off from their normal routines or employees whose companies agree to pay them for the time spent helping out, McCabe said.

"You go out to those homes and you see how happy these individuals are for the volunteers to be doing this. I just can't describe it," McCabe said.

The event is sponsored by One Valley Bank.

"People who have lived in this county have said they've never seen the community come together like this," Beirne said. "There's a lot of warm fuzzy feelings on that day."

Each of the projects has a coordinator who comes up with the materials needed and the volunteers, Beirne said.

Many of the projects involve work that the agencies could not afford to hire people to do because they spend all of their money on serving others, Beirne said.

The Day of Caring also kicks off the United Way campaign for 1997-1998.

Beirne said the goal this year is $230,000.

Last year's goal was $220,000 and the United Way exceeded that by pulling in $230,000 for the 19 agencies funded by the United Way.

Beirne said she believes the Day of Caring helped people in the community realize how many different agencies are served by the United Way.

Those interested in volunteering can sign up Sept. 9 at the kickoff breakfast at 8 a.m. at Jefferson Memorial Hospital in Ranson, W.Va.

A dinner will be held for participants at the end of the Day of Caring at 5 p.m. at Jefferson High School in Shenandoah Junction, W.Va.

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