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Nearly 500 volunteers take part in United Way's 23rd Annual Day of Caring

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Nearly 500 volunteers from across the region came together Thursday for United Way’s Annual Day of Caring, an event that benefits the entire community.

“All of the organizations that we’re volunteering with today make a huge difference in the community and I’ve personally used some of them as well, so being able to give back and have them help other people in our community is so important,” said Megan Deslippe, LIBRO Credit Union investment specialist .

The one-day event sees people from 25 workplaces helping with an array of projects, spanning from cleaning to folding and sorting donations at the London Coffee House.

Rose Whalen, CMHA Thames Valley Team Lead of outreach programs, stresses the importance of the volunteer work, “Our staff are very stretched thin on what they can do, and so if it wasn’t for volunteers we wouldn’t be able to sort through donations and prepare basic needs and toiletries for the people that we serve.”

United Way says Day of Caring brings people together to give back by helping organizations across Elgin and Middlesex.

United Way Elgin Middlesex’s Day of Caring volunteers on June 13, 2024. (Reta Ismail/CTV News London)

“It equals to about $50,000 in sweat equity that volunteers are doing all in the course of one afternoon out in the region,” said Kelly Ziegner, president and CEO of United Way Elgin Middlesex.

Volunteers tackle projects that would otherwise not have the resources and that make a difference for the people these agencies serve.

“One of the things I reflect upon is going out to agencies and meeting people who use the services there, and they often talk about those agencies as being their home. I feel most comfortable here, this is my home, and we want to help them ensure that those spaces are welcoming,” explained Ziegner.

Aside from giving back, volunteers were able to see first-hand the work that United Way’s funded agencies do in the community.

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