Furloughed State Workers to Give Day of Service

On their next furlough day, many state workers won’t just be taking a day off. They’ll be giving a Day of Service.

The Thurston County Steering Committee of the Combined Fund Drive, teaming with the Volunteer Center of Lewis, Mason, and Thurston Counties, is organizing a Day of Service cleanup event in downtown Olympia on August 6. They will be removing trash, digging weeds, and more to make downtown sparkle in the summer sun. All state employees – and all other interested volunteers – are invited to participate.

The idea first came from Valerie Pollet of the Medicaid Purchasing Administration at the Department of Social & Health Services. She said, “If this is affecting me and my coworkers in the pocketbook, and affecting the clients we serve, I wanted to do something to give back to the community. One thing led to another and this is the result.”

“The state employees involved are demonstrating that their commitment to public service remains strong even during difficult budget times,” said Sara Ballard, Executive Director of the Volunteer Center of Lewis, Mason and Thurston Counties. “The idea came from state employees, and the Volunteer Center is proud to help bring this project to life.”

Volunteers for the downtown cleanup should meet at the Heritage Park fountain, on 4th Avenue and Sylvester Street, at 9 AM. Participants are asked to bring their own gloves and plastic trash bags, and basic cleaning tools such as brooms if they can. For more information or to RSVP, call the Volunteer Center at 741-2622 or visit their website at www.volunteer.ws.

After the event, everyone is invited to come socialize and celebrate. From 2-5 PM, the Fish Bowl Brew Pub is offering half price pints of beer for participants.

The Day of Service is part of the Summer of Service, a series of volunteer activities from May 31 (Memorial Day) to September 11 (Day of Service and Remembrance), that address community renewal, education, environment and energy, health, and safety and security. For more details about this event and other volunteer opportunities, visit the website of the Volunteer Center of Lewis, Mason and Thurston Counties at www.volunteer.ws.

The mission of the Volunteer Center of Lewis, Mason and Thurston Counties is to support volunteer efforts to address community needs; and inspire, engage, and mobilize volunteers. The Center accomplishes this mission by connecting people with opportunities to serve, offering volunteer management training and the promotion of volunteerism.  The Center also provides more than 3,000 volunteer referrals per year, works with more than 250 nonprofit and public agencies in its service area and offers more than 650 volunteer opportunities through its Web site at www.volunteer.ws