After a successful community effort for the inaugural Day of Caring, Sedalia-Pettis County United Way is looking for more teams and projects for the second annual event.
The first SPCUW Day of Caring in Pettis County was hosted in October 2015 and saw 155 volunteers complete 18 projects, said SPCUW Executive Director Staci Harrison. This year’s event will be Saturday, Oct. 22 and the board has a goal of 20 teams, although that may continue to grow.
“Our goal was 20 teams. Now that we see our teams are approaching the 20 mark, if we don’t have to limit who we support, then we want to be able to complete 25 projects. The teams will help drive the projects,” Harrison said. “If we have smaller projects then we’ll double the projects up for a team, if they take about an hour. We had two teams last year that had two projects each.”
Each team will have a team leader who will attend a meeting in mid-July to select their team’s project.
Harrison said they’re looking for people to submit project proposals for those teams to complete in a one-day period. The 2015 event projects included yard work, constructing a wheelchair ramp and painting.
“The projects we had the opportunity to do last year supported veterans, disabled individuals, the elderly, low-income families — folks who may not have the means to get a project done financially or physically,” Harrison said.
Harrison noted that thanks to volunteers and community business partners, Day of Caring doesn’t cost SPCUW anything. In fact, she said that through volunteer hours alone, it was the equivalent of an almost $18,000 investment in the Sedalia/Pettis County community.
“We’re seeking support from the community whether it’s paint or whatever the project needs,” Harrison said. “Last year we found a combination — several projects, the homeowners had the materials but just didn’t have the physical means to get the project accomplished and we were able to give the manpower. Others we provided manpower and materials, others it was using tools volunteers brought, like for yard work. It really depends on the nature of the project.”
According to a SPCUW news release, Day of Caring 2016 will also include a partnership with the American Red Cross to install smoke detectors in rural Pettis County. Residents in or near Green Ridge, Smithton, Northwest and La Monte can sign up at their local school to have a smoke detector installed.
Local United Way organizations have been encouraged to host a Day of Caring by United Way Worldwide for decades as another way for neighbors to give back other than through financial contributions.
“It’s an event that allows us to bring people together, neighbors helping neighbors, advancing that common good, paying it forward,” Harrison explained. “Many times people want to invest in their community but don’t have the financial means to. This allows them to invest their time and talents in their community.
“What’s neat about Day of Caring this year is it’s also National Make a Difference Day on Oct. 22,” she added. “United Way would like to challenge other entities and individuals in Pettis County to pay it forward, make a difference. It could be picking up trash along the road, helping your neighbor; it’s an opportunity to help your community all on one day.”
Applications for teams and projects can be picked up and turned in at the SPCUW office, 3615 W. Broadway Blvd., or at the Pettis County Community Partnership, 1400 S. Limit Ave. Suite 29. Applications are also available online at spcuw.org under the “Give Back” tab. Applications are due July 8. For more information, contact Harrison at 660-826-2980 or email@example.com.
Nicole Cooke can be reached at 660-530-0138 or @NicoleRCooke.