MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties celebrated its 30th Annual Day of Caring on Wednesday, which has been sponsored by Summit Community Bank. There were a total of 220 volunteers working on over 20 different projects across Monongalia and Preston counties.

The beginning of the new Born Learning Trail that was installed by volunteers. (WBOY Image)

Volunteers were helping with the installation of the “Born Learning Trail,” at Krepps Park. They created a trail outline, dug the trail path, filled it in with mulch, and put up signs. The signs that are on the trail are meant to get kids and their parents engaged with their senses. Things like, “What do you see?”, “What can you hear?”, or “Sit and tell a story,” can be found on these signs.

Servando Arredondo, the Engagement Manager for the United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties, said, “The United Way has a national day of action that they do every year, and they do them towards the fall and different times of the year, but mostly in the fall. We have chosen to do ours right at the beginning of summer to just give volunteers an opportunity to get out of the house. It’s spring, things are warming up, um, but also to really help our partner agencies get prepped and ready for their summer programs.”

Volunteers cleaning up the Shack Neighborhood House’s playground. (WBOY Image)

Over at the Shack Neighborhood House, volunteers helped in a number of activities. They painted the pool, raked leaves and gravel, picked weeds, and set up the flower beds. This preparation was done for the children’s summer camps by J.S. Walker associates, the Shack staff, and friends.

Kate Covich, one of the community chairs for United Way’s Community Campaign, had said, “Earlier today, we had a kick-off for the Day of Caring, and it was estimated that through the volunteer work of all the different organizations in town… The organizations are getting about $22,000 worth of manpower just in our volunteer hours. So, it’s vital to these non-profit organizations throughout our community, and it’s just a lot of fun too, and the weather’s perfect today.”

Here is a list of all the projects that the community came together for:

• Project Healthy Kids with Healthy Kids Inc.
• Cleaning and Painting Club Pavilion & Benches
• Painting an Interior Office at Legal Aid of West Virginia
• Spring Gardening at Sundale Nursing Home
• Mentor Clients at PACE Enterprises
• Born Learning Trail Installation at Krepps Park
• Blue and Gold Mine Sale Prep
• Painting at the Salvation Army Family Store
• Painting at Kingwood Salvation Army
• Spring Cleanup and Maintenance at Eagles’ Wings Therapeutic Horsemanship
• TLC at the Kingwood Child Advocacy Center
• Tip Tap Makeover with the Morgantown Dance Studio
• Backpack Packing for the Backpack Feeding Program at Scott’s Run Settlement House
• The Aquatic Center & Track Complex at Mylan Park
• Office Updates and Renovation at the Rape and Domestic Violence Information Center
• Summer Trail Prep at Coopers Rock State Forest
• Paint Project at the Restore
• Helpful Harvest and the WVU Campus Food Garden
• Paint and Prep at the United Way
• Spring Outdoor Spruce up at Monongalia County Child Advocacy Center
• Summer Program Prep at The Shack Neighborhood House, Inc.
• Spring Cleanup and Maintenance at Catholic Charities
• Blood Drive with the American Red Cross

Up next, the United Way will be holding a Blue and Gold Mine Sell at WVU’s football stadium on Saturday, May 14. This event is to recycle things that community members and students have left behind at the end of the school semester.

To find volunteer opportunities through the United Way, you can click here.