Sarah Dudik | Gadsden Times
AT&T Pioneers volunteer Chris Goosby trims the branches of a tree with a chain saw Friday at the Barrie Center for Children. United Way volunteers took the community by storm and helped out at local social services agencies during United Way's annual Day of Action.
By Antrenise Cole
Times Staff Writer
More than 300 volunteers set aside their regular jobs Friday and took on tasks at local agencies for United Way of Etowah County’s Day of Action.
Cutting hedges, painting walls, washing windows and reading to children were just some of the many ways volunteers gave back to the agencies that make a difference in the community.
Day of Action Chairwoman Catherine Martin said more that 1,200 hours of work were donated Friday morning.
“Seventy-five jobs were completed for 17 agencies,” she said. “This year, we had to reach outside of United Way because we had so many volunteers. We partnered with the city of Gadsden and Habitat for Humanity to accomplish several projects.”
The Day of Action kicked off United Way’s annual Pacesetter Campaign.
“Combining our Day of Action and our Pacesetter kickoff helps employees see their donations at work,” said 2010 Campaign Chairman Todd Hindsman. “There is nothing like meeting the staff at a local agency. There is nothing like working side by side with our community partners.”
Lori Norman, with help from her co-workers at Healthsouth Rehabilitation Center, washed windows, painted rails and trimmed shrubs at the Family Success Center on East Broad Street in Gadsden.
“This takes us from our everyday work and lets us give back to an agency that helps so many,” Norman said. “It’s a very worthwhile cause and an excellent opportunity.”
Jennifer Lowman, a volunteer with the AT&T Pioneers, said her group donated its time to cut the grass, landscape, trim trees, pressure wash and paint at the Barrie Center for Children on East Chestnut Street in Gadsden.
“We volunteered here last year for the Day of Action,” Lowman said. “We liked it so much and we were so impressed by the Barrie Center that we wanted to come back and help them again this year. We know that this organization needs help, and we just want to do as much as we can. ”
Several volunteers from Gadsden State Community College and Riverview Regional Medical Center cleaned the Salvation Army on First Street in Gadsden.
“It’s always good to give back to the community and be around the people that you’re helping,” said Dana Simpson of Riverview Regional Medical Center. “They’re always so appreciative. We’re glad to offer our help.”
A luncheon to launch United Way’s 2010 fundraising campaign will be held Aug. 26 at Gadsden Convention Hall.