Our opinion: A vision of volunteersPublished 10:55am Friday, July 26, 2013
Despite the warm and sunny weather, many Austinites are giving their time to others rather than using it to play outdoors.
Dozens of Austin residents recently painted homes, cleaned yards, fixed windows and put up siding on homes in the northeast part of town as part of the Community Housing Improvement Program, an initiative of Vision 2020’s Community Pride & Spirit Committee.
More than 40 interns and workers from Hormel Foods cleaned almost every Mower County Historical Society building last week. School professionals and parents also partnered up last week to put on the annual Circle of Friends Day Camp for special needs students across the region.
Even more are busy putting together the Austin ArtWorks Festival, which will take place next month. And the Freeborn-Mower Chapter of the American Red Cross recently honored groups of volunteers for collecting blood during blood drives this past year.
Austin residents are volunteering to help out the community and we salute them for it. Every time someone steps up to participate in the myriad volunteer opportunities around town, everyone benefits. The people in need benefit from the help, Austin residents benefit from groups and organizations putting on large events, and volunteers benefit from the experience of serving others.
We commend every volunteer who works on a project for the betterment of the community and asks for nothing in return, and we urge more residents to give time and effort to do more for others.
Have a few extra hours every week? Why not volunteer at the Salvation Army and serve dinner to area residents? Or volunteer with one of the 10 Vision 2020 Committees to work on larger-scale projects that will impact Austin, bringing up to $120 million in infrastructure, services and attractions to our community? What about a local church group?
There is no downside to volunteering and Austin is, for better or worse, always in need of a good volunteer to take charge of the next big project. As you enjoy the rest of the summer, take a moment to think how you can help Austin become a better place.