Volunteers show they care at annual United Way event

Johnny Woodard Staff writer

September 6, 2013

LAURINBURG — United Way of Scotland County held the most successful volunteer event in its history on Friday, attracting over 100 volunteers for its annual “Day of Caring.”

“This really was a success,” said Dee Hammond, president of the Scotland County United Way. “I was just happy to see the people of Scotland County come together like this.”

Held annually for over a decade, the event gives Scotland County non-profits a boost by providing them with volunteers for projects. This year, it included for the first time a beautification project, an idea floated at last year’s event when more than 90 volunteers participated.

“Last year we saturated them with people and they were finished with every project in like an hour,” said Debbie Grant, executive director of the organization. “This is what I love about Scotland County. When help is needed, everybody comes together.”

After gathering at the Dulin Center at Scotland Memorial Hospital for a pep talk from Mike Miller, of Campbell Soup, the volunteers went their separate ways.

At Project InAsMuch, they sorted through donated clothes and packed food bags for hungry grade-schoolers.

Meanwhile, at Church Community Services, workers prepared for the organization’s yearly effort, named “Christmas Cheer,” that aims to provide the underprivileged with warm clothes during the holidays.

Dozens of other volunteers were shipped out various sites including Scotland County’s 4-H, the Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center, the Scotland Humane Society and the Friends of Scotland Enterprise.

At Habitat for Humanity, volunteers “worked hard to prepare a house in Laurinburg,” Hammond said.

Volunteers from Service Thread, a Laurinburg-based advanced manufacturing company, worked through lunch to make sure the area around the US-74 exit to Laurinburg’s Central Business District was properly cleaned and landscaped.

“We picked up a lot of trash out here today,” said Grant, whose hands were busy with a weed-eater for most of the morning.

“The reason we picked this area was because of the beach traffic and we also knew that this would be many people’s first impression of Laurinburg,” she said.

The Laurinburg-Scotland County Area Chamber of Commerce’s Green Committee coordinated the roadside work. For committee chair Leroy McIntyre, the clean-up had a deeper meaning.

“We want to make Scotland County a place we can all be proud of, and you can’t do that with garbage on the side of the road,” he said.

Friday also served as the launch of United Way’s 2013 fundraising campaign, headed up by Laurinburg resident Margaret Dickerson. The campaign is scheduled to conclude on Dec. 31.