School Clean-up Days Again Make an Impact

on Thursday, October 22, 2015 Posted in Stories, Happenings, School Partnership Network

Every August thousands of folks from numerous churches throughout the region take some valuable time on a Saturday in August to "clean up" their local schools. By the end of August each year the stories begin to come in... to the point where they almost become "routine." Yet, when you stop to consider the magnitude, there's nothing "routine" about it! Weeds get pulled, bushes trimmed, grass cut, hallways and classrooms painted, bark dust scattered, and numerous deferred maintenance projects are addressed. At the end of the day, a virtual army of volunteers, most of them from local faith communities, get to look back on their work and see a school and school grounds that are beautified and improved.

A "community care day" of some sort happens in almost all of our 29 local school districts. For example, this past August Portland Public Schools reported on their annual "Project Community Care," where 65 of 78 PPS schools hosted clean-up days. A total of 6,981 volunteers collected 490,000 pounds of yard debris, and 16,743 pounds of trash. They estimate the value to the district from this volunteer effort to be $896,534. We can only imagine what that number must be if we account for all 29 districts in the local area!

Thanks to all the individuals and churches that took on this "routine" challenge again this past August! Your service is both noticeable and deeply appreciated.