We host two large volunteer community events each year, Days of Caring and Day of Action. We also have community volunteers sit on our program evaluation panels to review grant applications and make funding recommendations.
Day of Action
This singular impact day is designed to mobilize community volunteers to work on service projects that will assist Henderson County Public Schools (HCPS) in preparing for a new academic year.
Day of Action 2022: This year's Day of Action is coming up on August 19th.
Day of Action: A Look Back
The COVID-19 pandemic has not stopped us from fulfilling this mission, and our 2021 Day of Action was a call to action for the community to help write thank you cards for 1,800 HCPS employees, which were delivered in December 2021. They’ve been there for the 13,000 students of HCPS through virtual learning, hybrid schedules, and COVID protocols, and they’ll be there whatever comes next. And through it all, they’ve shown care, compassion, and dedication to the children of our community.
In 2020, we supported HCPS students by providing a Back to School hygiene kit for all 13,000 students. Thanks to incredible community support, a grant from Pisgah Health Foundation, sponsorship from Pardee UNC Health Care, in-kind donations from Gaia Herbs and FEMA, and organizations throughout the community stepping up to get involved, we raised enough funds and resources to provide every HCPS student with a back to school hygiene kit!
In a traditional year, hundreds of volunteers spread out at schools across the county and work on projects that include painting, mulching the grounds, repairing playgrounds and equipment, cleaning, planting, and a variety of other jobs that school staff would not otherwise have the time or resources to complete. Volunteers are also encouraged to bring school supplies and nonperishable food items for students in need.
In 2019, over 500 volunteers contributed 2,200 volunteer hours to benefit Henderson County schools and our children.
Days of Caring
United Way of Henderson County’s signature community-wide volunteer event is traditionally held in May. These two sequential days of volunteer opportunities appeal to a wide array of businesses, nonprofits and community volunteers.
Days of Caring: A Look Back
Our 2022 Days of Caring was a huge success in May of 2022 and we completed 34 projects with the help of nearly 400 volunteers! Many thanks to all of the individuals, families, businesses and community organizations that participated! View photos here.
Our 2021 Days of Caring transitioned to a virtual event to raise funds and food for 13 local food pantries in Henderson County. Volunteers mobilized their neighborhoods, civic clubs and businesses to collect food to be donated to a local food pantry, and thanks to a generous gift from Tom & Sue Fazio, all financial gifts up to $25,000 were matched for a total of $54,000 that has been distributed to all 13 local food pantries.
Days of Caring has long been a popular initiative that demonstrates what people working together for the community good can accomplish. In 2019, more than 400 volunteers contributed over 1,600 volunteer hours in Henderson County by working on projects such as landscaping, painting, sewing pillows for hospice patients, sorting children’s books and building garden beds. It is an eagerly anticipated occasion that engages many sectors of our community.
This two-day event also encompasses the National Association of Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive, the largest single day food drive in the nation. In 2019, local Letter Carriers and volunteers collected 45,000 pounds of non-perishable food donations from postal customers mailboxes across the county. The collected food was distributed to Interfaith Assistance Ministry, The Salvation Army and The Storehouse to help stock their pantry shelves for the summer months.
Program Evaluation Panel Volunteers
Serving as a Program Evaluation Panel member is a great way to give back to our community while learning about the breadth of needs and resources in Henderson County.
Program evaluation panel members serve on a specific focus area - Education, Income, Health, or Basic Needs/Crisis Services – and review applications for funding from local nonprofits. Panel members are advocates for clients who receive services, agencies that provide services, and the community at large. In addition, members act as stewards to ensure that UWHC funds are used wisely and responsibly. Panel members attend 4-6 two hour meetings during February-April, and commit to about two hours of “homework” before each meeting. We have filled our volunteer slots for Spring 2022. Please check back for future panel volunteer opportunities.