Wednesday, an army of volunteers fanned out across the metro for a day of community service. The United Way calls it a Day of Action. Close to 2,000 volunteers worked on dozens of projects.
“Volunteers aren`t just nice, but they`re necessary,” says Shirley Burgess with United Way of Central Iowa. “Volunteers are really part of the solution to our community`s issues.”
For some, their day of action meant a day of building.
“We knew this was something that was going to help families that were in need,” says volunteer Melody Bolden.
Three hundred people set up shop at the fairgrounds to assemble 300 dressers for FreeStore. The charity collects furniture and household items for people in need.
“Most of these families are from domestic violence families and basically some of the things they would run out of would be dressers,” says Bolden.
“Anytime we have a chance to get involved in a project like this, especially involving the United Way, we always welcome the opportunity,” says volunteer Rick Goecke.
Goecke works at UPS and is used to making deliveries, but not all of them are as rewarding.
“Very enjoyable and a lot of good people here,” he says.
Goodwill Industries needed some painters and some people who work in insurance grabbed a brush and went to work. The rest was in charge of cleaning hard drives and testing computer accessories that goodwill will turn around and sell.
“That`s kind of a fun thing about activities like this, what we call our done in a day activities, is it takes people out of their regular and normal environment and gives them a chance to do something entirely different,” says Burgess.
“Today was awesome,” says Bolden.
Day of Action projects continue this week. Tomorrow, United Way volunteers will read with students in Urbandale and over the weekend, they will go door-to-door for the Reach Out to Dropouts program.