Helping. Sharing. Caring. That is what Thursday was all about for many Utah County companies and their workers.

The United Way-sponsored Day of Caring seemed to bring out the best in all who participated. And there didn't seem to be a shortage of workers for this special activity.After enjoying a breakfast cooked by some of the area's well-known figures, the volunteers, employees of Utah Valley businesses as well as those who volunteer "just for the fun of it" rolled up their sleeves and fanned out throughout the valley to work.

They washed windows, painted, cleaned yards, canned fruit, helped build a Habitat for Humanity house, as well as other projects. They made a difference wherever they went.

Cheryl Adamson, assistant director and volunteer coordinator for Recreation and Habilitation Services (RAH) in Provo, expressed her thanks for those who came to help at her facility. Some, she said, come year after year.

"As a person, it makes me proud to see the support the community gives," Adamson said. "It is through volunteer projects like this that we can serve the public."

Organizations that have served RAH for several years include Campus Credit Union, Nu Skin, and the Mountainland or-gan-i-za-tions.

Several employees of Nu Skin painted a trailer used by RAH to transport the aluminum the students there collect. It was getting rather shabby looking and needed some attention. With sandpaper, paint and brush, the trailer soon looked almost new.

"It's so much fun," said Nu Skin employee Lisa Mohlman. "I've never been involved in a big organization before." She is also a student and likes the idea of volunteering. A group of young men, also employees of Nu Skin helped paint the picnic tables and later washed RAH's vans.

Up the street a bit, volunteers descended on the Red Cross Center. The Red Cross secured 200 cots from Hill Air Force Base in Ogden. These cots had to be washed, disinfected, dried and then stored for future use. Between 40 and 50 volunteers from various organizations, as well as a sizeable group from Brigham Young University, unpacked, scrubbed and dried the cots.

Specified chemicals for the cleaning process were donated by Carl Lewis' business. Kim Hunsaker's business, Hotsy, donated the steam machine needed to sterilize and dry the cots.

Before all this could take place, however, the cots needed to be transported. The professional truck driving students from Utah Valley State College saw a great opportunity to learn while they served. Under the direction of their instructor, Ken Fisk, they brought the cots from HAFB.

It took a little more than two hours of work to give the Red Cross a much-needed supply of clean cots. In the event of a disaster, these cots are ready.