Some 1,000 University of Virginia employees rolled up their sleeves Wednesday to participate in the annual United Way Laurence E. Richardson Day of Caring, a communitywide volunteer service day. They engaged in numerous service projects, including landscaping and painting, visiting with elderly residents, reading to schoolchildren and bathing dogs at the SPCA.
“The weather was perfect and spirits were high as volunteers tackled their projects,” said Lis Christian, outreach associate in U.Va.’s Community Relations Office, which coordinates the annual event. “I’m continually amazed and touched by the willingness of University employees to donate their time and talents to make this event such a remarkable affair.”
And what did some of the participants have to say?
“I had a blast!” said Jenny Chargeback of U.Va.’s Human Resources department, who volunteered at the WorkSource Enterprises carnival. “I was extremely honored to be part of such a wonderful event, and I can’t wait to do it again next year.”
Elaine Paley, an engagement associate in the Office of Development and Public Affairs, said, “With all the thanks we received and spending time with teachers and children, it was a really great experience – a Day of Caring that I think meant as much to us as it did to everyone at Clark Elementary.”
This year, employees had the opportunity to volunteer at 100 projects in schools and nonprofit organizations in the city of Charlottesville and Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene Louisa and Nelson counties.
The Day of Caring is one of the many ways that U.Va. employees demonstrate their generosity and support of community, Jim Fitzgerald, associate director of community relations, said. Another way is the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign, the workplace-giving program for state employees, through which U.Va. employees donated $982,000 in support of their favorite charities in 2011, he said, noting that the 2012 CVC kicks off Oct. 1.