REACH volunteers help residents come clean

March 25, 2007|by TARA REILLY

HAGERSTOWN-Twelve-year-old Kelsey Koontz dedicated her Saturday morning to cleaning resident rooms at Potomac Towers in Hagerstown.

By about 10 a.m., she had flipped a mattress and cleaned windows and a bathroom, learning how to scrub a toilet.

Why do it?

"Because it's a church thing," Kelsey said.

Kelsey, of Christ Community Church, was grouped with two other volunteers participating in REACH Caregivers Inc.'s annual Spring Fling.

The event is organized through REACH's Faith In Action program and is intended to help residents of Potomac Towers and Walnut Towers - both Hagerstown Housing Authority complexes - take care of some cleaning.

"It's people of different faiths coming together, working together for the common good of others," said Kevin Collins, director of the Faith In Action program.


Twenty-four people volunteered for Spring Fling, and about 40 residents signed up for assistance, Collins said.

Many of the residents have a hard time cleaning their rooms in hard to reach places or struggle to flip mattresses because they are disabled or elderly, Collins said.

"We look forward to having REACH come in and do this," said Grace Weekley, Hagerstown Housing Authority senior services program director. "It does really help the people out."

Collins said the event also gives residents the opportunity to have company.

"They're just wanting someone to talk to. They're lonely," he said. "It's not just the things we do, it's the time we spend with them."

Elaine Lyon, a member of New Light Metropolitan Community Church, said she enjoys volunteering.

"I just genuinely enjoy helping others," she said. Her chores for the day included flipping mattresses and scrubbing the floor.

"I feel we have a debt to society and helping others in need," said volunteer Chris Davis from St. Andrew Presbyterian Church.

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