Neighborhood Housing Services of Provo is looking for volunteers to help with a yearly spring cleanup project in Provo Saturday, April 25, from 8:30 a.m. to approximately 1 p.m.
Volunteers are needed to rake leaves, trim bushes, clean flower beds and pick up trash, mainly for elderly individuals who cannot do the work themselves, or to help clean up overgrown areas by removing weeds.Sam Lee, program coordinator for Neighborhood Housing Services of Provo, said this year's location in Provo's Franklin neighborhood was determined by a committee that selects neighborhoods based on needs as well as through references.
Volunteers will gather at Pioneer Park for breakfast at 8:30 a.m., and then will break into groups to complete the 10-15 projects. Once the projects are completed, volunteers will return to Pioneer Park for a lunch at 12:30 p.m.
"We have had over 100 volunteers come each year for the last two years," said Lee. "Last year we were able to complete about 20 projects. This is a wonderful beautification project for Provo and it helps get neighborhoods ready for summer."
Other volunteer opportunities to serve are available throughout Utah County. Some of these are listed below.
- Advocates for victims of child abuse. Volunteers are needed to help abused and neglected children who have been removed from their homes and need representation in court. Advocate volunteers known as Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) assist the Office of the Guardian ad Litem for the Fourth District Juvenile Court, helping the court receive specific information about what action would be in the best interest of a particular child. Training for CASA volunteers will begin the end of April. Individuals must be at least 18 years old and available 10 to 15 hours each month for at least 12 months.
- Mentor youths in your community. Concept Key, a program that provides care to school-age children during intercession or after school, needs volunteers to serve as mentors. Volunteers help provide a safe environment for children by spending one-on-one time with children and by serving as teacher's assistants. Volunteers are asked to donate one hour each week between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.
- Volunteers are also needed to serve as mentors in the Provo School District mentoring program, which serves students of all ages. Mentors spend 40 minutes-a-week with students. They can participate in a variety of activities with the students including reading books, helping their student set goals, participating in fun activities, listening, or helping their student do schoolwork.
- Help make wishes come true for children. Make-A-Wish Foundation of Utah, a nonprofit agency that grants wishes for children challenged by life-threatening illnesses, is forming a volunteer committee in Utah County. Volunteers are needed to focus on wish granting, special events, medical outreach and public speaking. Volunteers are also needed to plan special events, such as planning parties for wish kids, instructing medical professionals in Utah County about how to refer eligible children to Make-A-Wish, and to visit schools and attend public events to explain the Make-A-Wish Foundation to those who are interested in helping.
For more information about the cleanup and other volunteer opportunities throughout Utah County, contact the United Way Volunteer Center at 374-8108 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or visit the United Way of Utah County web site at (www.unitedwayuc.org).