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Posted: 06/04/14



SPRING CLEANING

Above, volunteers with OneMacomb work on a deck for a resident near Amanda Moore Elementary on May 17. At left, more than 150 volunteers showed up on May 17 to clean the grounds at Amanda Moore Elementary and plant new flowers as well as provide repairs and yard work to residents near the building. Below, the volunteers were rewarded for their efforts with a barbecue. Volunteers from local churches joined forces for the four-part community service project that will fix up Amada Moore Elementary's grounds and residences.

(Photos courtesy of Pastor Jon Waters)

OneMacomb spruces up
homes, Amanda Moore

by CHRIS GRAY
Observer Staff Writer
      More than 150 volunteers from local churches made it their mission on May 17 to take care of their fellow residents and their elementary school.
       The OneMacomb Community Network continued its summer-long project of community service by assisting 10 households with yard work and repairs while beautifying the grounds at Amanda Moore Elementary.
       Through the Everyone a Chance to Hear (EACH) outreach program, churches in Macomb County formed the OneMacomb volunteer group. As part of its mission of community service, churches representing the northern half of the county came together a year ago and selected a school and its surrounding community to clean up.
       The plans came to fruition as 130 volunteers set out on April 26 to clean the grounds at Amanda Moore, including trash pickup and prepping gardens and flowerbeds for planting. On May 17, volunteers returned to remove any trash and plant flowers, receiving assistance from Mt. Vernon Tree and Landscape in the form of 150 yards of donated mulch.
       Principal Roger Bennett said it looked like a brand new school after the volunteers cleaned and planted the flowerbeds, including the school's butterfly garden.
       "It was awesome," he said. "We had even more volunteers for round two than we did for round one - the response has been amazing."
       He said OneMacomb left the school's outdoor science center alone after cleaning it, but some volunteers approached the school to see if they can utilize and maintain the garden for the summer.
       In addition to the school, volunteers fanned out to provide repairs and other maintenance to 10 homes belonging to Amanda Moore Elementary families. Pastor Jon Waters of the River of God Community Church said homes were selected last month when volunteers went door-to-door asking residents what they could do to help, while other families submitted applications through the school.
       "Most of the homes we took care of were senior citizens, some with disabilities," Waters said. "They had to own the home, it couldn't be a rental."
       The fixes mainly consisted of fixing decks and porches, and were supervised by Promise Keepers Construction. Waters said one home was in such disrepair that they couldn't provide the required fixes, so OneMacomb may use whatever funds are remaining to purchase a new manufactured home for the family.
       Volunteers were rewarded for their efforts with barbecues held at two sites. Waters said they even invited the residents they assisted and anyone else they saw to grab a bite to eat as well.
       OneMacomb will return June 16-20 to Amanda Moore to give the teacher's lounge a much-needed renovation. This will include expanding the room and providing new paint, furniture, appliances and lighting.
       Bennett said the staff is grateful for the gesture, as the cramp room doesn't allow them to enjoy lunch at the same time.
       "Not only will they make it look nicer, but they'll maximize the space, which is going to be good," he said.
       The final day of the project will be Aug. 23, where OneMacomb will hold a celebration party. Free kids activities, food and even medical and dental services will be available. Backpacks will also be given to students.
       Waters said all the efforts are part of an anticipated $22,000 budget made up of donations and contributions. He said collections were at around $17,000 as of last week.
       "If people want to volunteer or donate, we would love to have them," Waters said.
       Churches participating in the OneMacomb effort include: River of God, Romeo United Methodist, Grace Lutheran Fellowship, Romeo First Church of God, Orchard Community, Momentum, Shepherd's Gate Lutheran, Macomb Christian, St. Clement of Rome and Orchard Ridge.
       For further information or to contribute, call River of God at (586) 752-2998 or visit www.onemacomb.org.
      


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