Why would a group of young people be collecting toiletries for the National Day of Service?
Well, the items collected by the Americorps VISTA volunteers go to veterans. VISTA volunteer Jessi Sheava sayssaid for vets going through hard times, some staying at the local homeless shelter, toiletries like toothpaste and shampoo may be luxury items.
"A lot of veterans here in Helena are looking for jobs, are eager to find work and the basics are needed to help them in their everyday life," she said.
On Wednesday, ten or so VISTA volunteers will be posted at a couple of grocery stores in the Capital City--providing lists of the items the drive is looking for and asking for support.
The National Day of Service was founded as a way to reclaim the sense of unity felt around the country in the wake of 9/11—to reclaim that sense through joining together in service projects to meet local needs.
Here's a full list of Americorps and Senior Corps events being held around the state on September 11th, provided by the Governor's Office of Community Service:
- Senior Corps and Food Corps are teaming up in Butte to collect extra produce from community gardens and deliver it to the Butte Emergency Food Bank on Wednesday, 9/11, between 9am and 12pm. Contact Michele Brennick at 406-533-2508.
- Senior Corps is hosting a Harvest for Seniors in Miles City and Sidney to collect extra produce and provide it to seniors in need on Wednesday, 9/11. Contact Betty Vail (Miles City) at 406-234-0505 or Karen O’Dell (Sidney) at 406-433-4967.
- AmeriCorps VISTA members are holding a toiletry drive in Helena from 3pm to 8pm on Wednesday, 9/11 at Safeway, Albertsons on Fee Street, and Vans Thriftway grocery stores. Contact Jessi Sheava at 406-444-3925.
- Senior Corps is providing a Heroes Lunch at Park County Senior Center in Livingston to honor current military and fallen veterans, local law enforcement, fire departments and those in public service from 12:30pm to 1:30pm on Wednesday, 9/11. They will also be collecting gifts for service men and women. Contact Shannon Burke at 406-222-2281 or Brooke Cottongim at 406-333-2276.
- AmeriCorps VISTA members are collecting toiletries at grocery stores across town to benefit the YWCA in Missoula on Wednesday, 9/11.
- Senior Corps, Human Resource Development Council, and the Gallatin Valley Food Bank are hosting a joint Blanket Drive at the mall in Bozeman on Wednesday, 9/11.