Numerous businesses, organizations and civic groups from the area gave back the community Friday as part of the United Way Day of Caring in the Carlisle area.

The event, hosted by the United Way of Carlisle & Cumberland County and sponsored by UPMC Pinnacle Carlisle, saw more than 400 volunteers take on projects from painting and landscaping to cleaning and maintenance.

“I enjoy doing it,” Christina Hess said. “I don’t always get extra time to do extra activities for the community like I would want to. So, these types of events, I always enjoy doing. It’s not always financially possible (to give), but you can always donate your time for free.”

She was joined by two fellow employees — Schanelle Palmer and Joel Sanders — from Giant Food Stores at the Carlisle YWCA. The group spent the day painting offices.

“I think it’s nice to see, when you come out and volunteer, the work that you do for the community and how it affects the community,” Palmer said.

The day kicked off with coffee and donuts at 8 a.m. before groups broke off and got to work.

Projects were hosted by groups including the Arc of Cumberland & Perry Counties, the Borough of Carlisle, Carlisle Family YMCA, Carlisle West Side Neighbors, MidPenn Legal Services and Project SHARE.

This year’s Day of Caring was moved up a week to align with the inauguration of Dickinson College’s new president, Margee Ensign.

Students, staff and faculty from Dickinson College spent the day reading to students at all seven Carlisle Area School District elementary schools.

“United Way proudly celebrates volunteerism in our community. Volunteering to help our community partners is a direct and hands-on effort to help the worthy causes that these agencies represent, and goes a long way to assisting them in enhancing the services they provide to the community,” said Lucy Zander, executive director of United Way of Carlisle & Cumberland County.


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