We just completed our 19th annual Make A Difference Day, and it was another huge success, with over 1,100 volunteers. I would like to thank the Westport Rotary and Oscar's Delicatessen and the Masonic Lodge No. 65 for their continued sponsorship of this annual volunteer event and our drop-in projects. Thanks to Biersdorf, TD Bank, Volvo of Westport for in-kind donations that helped our volunteers create 50 toiletry bags for the homeless, 75 comfort bags for abused women and 25 arts and crafts kits for children in need.

We completed 17 projects, and I would like to thank Builders Beyond Borders who took on four projects for STAR; Wakeman Town Farm; Green Village Initiative and New Beginnings Family Academy; St. Luke's Church, which collected used computers and peripherals; Girl Scouts that made arts and crafts kits for children at Sloan Kettering Memorial Hospital; The West School in New Canaan; Kings Highway School; Hallaron & Sage LLC; Kaiya Yoga, which ran Halloween-costume collections for needy children; the Y's Men for their clean up at Bacharach, the Westport and Sunrise Rotaries, which helped run a food drive; Heather O'Neill and Second Nature Landscape Design, which donated bulbs, and SLOBS, who planted them around town; the Assumption Church congregation for their sock drive for the homeless; The Edge in Fairfield hosted a Zumbathon for breast-cancer survivors; Camp Manitou that families cleaned up at Eno Preserve; and parent volunteers of the Children's Community Development Center.

And thanks to Ann Campbell who baked for the after-school kids at the Family and Children's Agency.

Thanks to all of you who came out to help. Every year we have people out volunteering and forgetting to tell us who you are and what you did. Let me know by emailing makadif@aol.com.

The success of Make A Difference Day comes from not only our volunteers who work on projects but people and organizations that help in other ways. The organizing committee does an amazing job and deserves huge thanks. The Center for Senior Activities for being our headquarters on the day; Frank Rac for his continued help in "running around town" so that it all got done.

A special thanks to the town of Westport and First Selectman Jim Marpe for his support, encouragement and help at our drop-in projects. The town and its residents should take enormous pride in their participation in Make A Difference Day and how projects have developed so that we are not only helping those in need in our town but have gone beyond our borders. We need to continue with this mission. See you all next October.

A photo album capturing our day will be posted soon on our website, http://westport-makeadifday.org.

Barbara Pearson-Rac


Make A Difference Day