June 18, 2018


Every June, our company organizes and sponsors a month's worth of community service. We're encouraged to get out of the office and volunteer our brains and brawn. I traditionally gravitate toward the outdoors-y projects. [As if I didn't have enough yard work to do.]

Adopt A Park truck and trailer, San Jose, California
We learned that the city of San Jose has more than 200 parks! And (no surprise here) there isn't enough staff to maintain them. Especially since, here in California, stuff grows ... and grows ... year round.

Group shot of most of our volunteers, San Jose, California
The project I chose this year was on the grounds of a large community center, landscaped with trees, bushes, and flowers that were out of control. Volunteering alone isn't enough for me; for many years, I have chosen to lead at least one project. This year I went all in: 100 volunteers to coordinate (one of whom stepped up to co-lead!).

We swarmed over the grounds and, in a matter of hours, transformed the place. Community members thanked us, the staff came out to marvel at what we accomplished, and city workers hauled multiple truckloads away.

Weeding, raking, and sweeping debris, San Jose California
I joined a crew that tackled the weeds, leaves, and assorted debris that had accumulated in the plants along the long sidewalk fronting the facility. We raked and pulled and swept faster than our comrades could load tarps and wheelbarrows to haul it away.

A few folks even stayed late, after lunch, to help the city worker load the last load into his truck.

Piles of plant trimmings and debris next to a city truck, San Jose, California
At the end of our stint, everyone was dirty and sweaty ... and proud of what we accomplished.

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