Ad Spot

Boys &Girls Club benefits
from annual Day of Caring

By Staff
PAINTERS Zula Kimble, left, and Marilyn Bell of Jeff Anderson Regional Medical Center paint one of the rooms at the East Mississippi Boys &Girls Club as part of the United Way's annual Day of Caring project. Employees from
several Pace-setter companies did volunteer work Friday at 11 non-profit agencies supported by United Way of East Mississippi. Photo by Paula Merritt / The Meridian Star.
By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
Aug. 9, 2003
About 89 volunteers scrubbed, dug, painted and filed on Friday at United Way agencies during the organization's 4th Annual Day of Caring.
The volunteers came from "Pace-setter" companies businesses whose employees have agreed to begin their annual fund-raising efforts for the local United Way early. The official kick-off of the local United Way campaign traditionally begins in September.
On Friday volunteers painted walls, did clerical work for offices, cleaned and did landscaping at 11 non-profit agencies in town supported by the United Way.
About 10 volunteers from Jeff Anderson Regional Medical Center, one of the Pace-setter companies, helped out at the East Mississippi Boys &Girls Club, one of the United Way agencies that needed the most help.
Getting ready to open its doors
Ricky Hood, executive director of the club, a place where children learn and play after school, said the center will open Aug. 18.
The club was established in Meridian in 1988 to provide a safe gathering place for at-risk young people and to alleviate the effects of gang-related activities, drugs, teenage pregnancy and an increase in school drop-out rates.
The club is a former church that has been in need of renovations for a while. Hood said new tile will be put down beginning on Monday. Lauderdale County and the city of Meridian are also contributing to the club's renovation project.
Volunteers rewarded
Joel Johnson, director of Jeff Anderson's Health &Fitness Center, is also the outgoing board chairman of the local United Way. He has been a Day of Caring volunteer for several years.
Bruce Shannon, Anderson's cardiology director and safety officer, helped Johnson paint walls at the club on Friday. He said he and his wife, Dianne Shannon, a nurse in the public school system, see community needs daily and enjoy helping where help is most needed.
Volunteers did work for the following local United Way agencies: American Red Cross, Boy Scouts, Boys &Girls Club, Care Lodge, Community of Hope, Girl Scouts, Hope Village for Children, Meals on Wheels, Meridian Speech and Hearing Center, Wesley House Community Center and Youth Excitement Team.