Central Virginians Volunteer for United Way's Day of Caring - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Central Virginians Volunteer for United Way's Day of Caring

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Volunteers during United Way Day of Caring Volunteers during United Way Day of Caring

Hundreds of nonprofit projects that may have gotten pushed aside through tight budget times are finished thanks to thousands of volunteers in central Virginia. Employees from dozens of businesses took part in the United Way's Day of Caring.

Those businesses gave their workers a break Wednesday to give back to their community. The 230 projects range from landscaping and painting to stuffing newsletter mailings for nonprofits.

Adrienne Weinberger helped spruce up the grounds around the Jefferson Area Board for Aging.

"We're having a lot of fun, too, and meeting new people," said Weinberger, volunteer for the Leadership Charlottesville Alumni Association.

She and her fellow Leadership Charlottesville alumni volunteer for the United Way's Day of Caring each year.

"It's a good cause. I think it's a nice thing to do, and it doesn't take that much time out of my work," said Weinberger.

On the other side of JABA's fence, the agency's preschool children and day care seniors enjoyed carnival fun set up by volunteers from the University of Virginia and NBC29.

"That makes things go more smoothly. They get to meet the elders and our children and build a community that way," said Lauren Catlett, intergenerational program coordinator at JABA.

Around 2,300 volunteers from more than 60 businesses donated their time at the Day of Caring projects across central Virginia.

"Those are things the nonprofits can't afford to do themselves or don't have time to do themselves," said Kim Connolly, of the United Way Jefferson Area.

Overgrown gardens at Hollymead Elementary School get cleared of weeds thanks to volunteers.

"When you get out of the bus, you want to see an inviting place to come in to. You don't want to see something overgrown and scary-looking," said Gail Pfaff, MITRE Corporation volunteer. "I know a lot of teachers have stopped us and thanked us for being there and coming in." 

The United Way hopes this one day inspires volunteers to continue serving their community every day.

"I don't know who gets more out of it - the volunteers or the nonprofits," said Connolly.

The United Way adds up all those volunteer hours and estimates the nonprofits get more than $303,000 worth of free labor on this single day of service. 

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