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'Week of Caring' kicks off

By Jim Conrad, jconrad@wcyb.com
Published On: Jun 17 2013 04:35:03 PM CDT
Updated On: Jun 16 2013 11:00:00 PM CDT

Volunteers help those who help others during the annual Week of Caring.

BRISTOL, Va. -

Literally dozens of volunteers swarmed United Way agencies across the Tri-Cities as the 21st-annual Week of Caring got underway Monday.

130 projects are on their list this year. The volunteers not only made donations to the United Way, but gave their time as well.

They were painting, weeding, planting, mowing, sweeping, and whatever else needed to done at United Way agencies during the Week of Caring, like the Boys & Girls Club in Bristol.

The volunteers are United Way board members and staff, plus employees who've taken the day to give back.

Regions Bank has sponsored the event since 1992. "We've gotten wonderful feedback from not only our associates from the company, but also from many people in the community that have volunteered and benefited as well from the many projects that we've done over 21 years," bank president David Wharton said.

And for the agencies themselves a wonderful chance to get some much needed projects done. "This has allowed us to get the outside of our building painted. It's allowed us to get our flower gardens weeded, there's some mowing going on, they're washing the inside and outside of our vans. Just things we other wise would not get accomplished," Eric Clark, director of the Bristol Boys & Girls Club says.

Members of agencies served by United Way are out volunteering as well. CASA of North East Tennessee, Court Advocates for Children, left a reminder of their work and a growing need with their flower pots. "Each red plant represents 50 children that CASA was able to advocate for. Those are 50 children that had a court-appointed special advocate. Each blue flower represents 50 children that we were not able to represent," CASA representative Brooke LaMere explained of their flower pot adorned with red and blue flowers.

It's a Week of Caring and giving back to those agencies that give back every day.