This blog post is written by one of our Account Executives, Kayleigh and is about her experience at Day of Caring 2011.
My boss told me to arrive at 7 AM sharp. I questioned why so early, since I knew my other co-workers wouldn’t be arriving until 7:30-8, but she said to trust her, that I would want to be able to take it all in.
She was right. Getting there so early allowed me to see the hundreds of volunteers pile in to the arena, equipped with their white t-shirts, smiles and supplies they would be using throughout the day. It was a sight to be seen and one I will remember for a very long time. The thought of thousands of Western New Yorkers coming together for the second largest volunteer event in the COUNTRY was overwhelming in the absolute best way possible. I couldn’t wait to start the day and visit some of the different sites.
I started off at the Central City Café, where Harlequin Distributions was helping clean up the food shelter and planting in the garden and then made my way to Goodwill Industries, where CTG was hard at work loading, unloading, sorting, packing and stocking. Goodwill was FILLED with donated items ready for the fall. I also stopped to see volunteers from Kaleida Health cleaning up Buffalo City Mission.
I made my way out to Getzville and stopped at Weinberg Campus, where UNYTS and Damon & Morey were two of the many companies volunteering that day. Each volunteer was assigned to a resident, and they spent the morning visiting different stations, one were they played BINGO, another where they made bird feeders out of Cheerios, and one were they participated in arts & crafts. The smiles on the resident’s faces said it all. As I walked through the halls, I saw a lot of the pairs sitting comfortably as the volunteer listened to stories of “back in the day.”
I checked out a home that belongs to Heritage Christian Services, where volunteers from the Williamsville School District were hard at work completely redoing the landscaping outside. They were all tired, hot and sweaty from the blistering sun, but their work turned out fabulous and made a huge difference outside the house.
My final stop of the day was to visit Schiller Park Senior Center, where a team of 30 from Independent Health were located. I had visited this location many times before to help prepare for Day of Caring, but never imagined it would look the way it did when I arrived. The landscaping was completely re-done, the two lobbies inside were re-painted bright, vibrant colors, which added life to the center. Tiles were replaced in the ceiling and the basement was completely hauled out and reorganized. They really did a
When I got back to HSBC Arena, I saw many volunteers from many different companies coming together, eating and dancing. It was a long day of hard work, but you couldn’t wipe the smiles off the volunteer’s faces if you tried.
It truly was an incredible experience, to see so many people come together in order to make this community a better place to live.