The rainy forecast didn’t stop approximately 700 volunteers from participating in the UWCA MLK Day of Service on Saturday, January 15. The volunteers, of which more than half were middle and high school students, participated in more than 20 projects across Austin and the surrounding area.
“I think it’s really exciting to be with a whole bunch of people who are just dedicated toward one goal. Everyone woke up early and are here to give back and celebrate a wonderful day,” said Lacey Allen, who works with College Forward through AmeriCorps State.
Allen’s group braved the weather to help clean and beautify Audubon Nature Trails. Most of these projects were outside and focused on landscape, garden and greenbelt beautificaton projects.
Northwest Hills United Methodist Church didn’t let the rain cancellation of its project stop them. Its members joined other volunteers at Any Baby Can to help prepare materials for the upcoming 3M Half Marathon.
“To have a community that is best for everyone, it takes everyone giving back and volunteering their time,” said Sue Abold, who helps coordinate volunteer projects for the church.
The nonprofit organizations sponsoring projects are grateful for the efforts and time given by the volunteers. Christin Alvarado with Feria Para Aprender led volunteers in sorting donated Spanish-language books that will be given to children at an education fair on January 29.
“We really needed the help with this annual event,” Alvardo said. “We usually have about 10,000 or so books that need sorting before the event, and this day is a great way to get the help.”
The MLK Day of Service is unique to UWCA’s other annual days of service in that it falls on a weekend and provides more flexibility for families to volunteer together. Visit handsoncentraltexas.org to see dates for our Spring Day of Service and find other volunteer opportunities in the Austin area.
Special thanks to our partners: Huston-Tillotson University, Austin Area Heritage Council, Ala Carte and State Representative Dawnna Dukes. And thank you to our sponsors Batter Blaster and Sunflower Market for providing a wonderful breakfast for our volunteers.