A few years ago, as I headed down Main Street, I noticed a group of folks painting a house. Another group of people planted trees along the road. Further ahead, more people tended to a yard in need of tender loving care. I cried. Who were these people and why were they helping? I needed to know.
I discovered that the day was called ShareFest. Civic organizations, churches, and citizens helped restore the community in one day.
The tradition continues, in a Washington community of approximately 200,000 people. This past March, 785 volunteers worked on 200 projects. Hiking trails were maintained, trees and flowers were planted, cookies were delivered to firefighters, trash was picked up, and cement was poured. The community is rejuvenated!
Behind the scenes of ShareFest requires an enormous amount of coordination and planning. However, the opportunity for a community to join together is priceless. Not only does a day like ShareFest help those in need, but individuals have the opportunity to volunteer.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2011 64.3 million people volunteered at least one time in a 12 month period. Of course, the data didn’t include children who volunteered.
An event such as ShareFest isn’t limited to adults and is a perfect opportunity for children to help others in a community and to be part of a community.
ShareFest is a chance to give, without expecting anything in return.